Golden Hour Photography – capturing the magic hour

September means one thing for photographers, the beginning of capturing the elusive Golden Hour. The Golden Hour (sometimes referred to as the Magic Hour) is often defined as the first and last hour of sunlight in the day when the special quality of light yields particularly striking photographs. The low sun produces more directional light, adding dimension, texture and depth to the images.

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Last year we reported on ‘The Photographer’s Ephemeris”, a useful app to help capture the magic hour and make the most of the natural light. The app and travel companion calculates the direction of the sun and identifies the optimum time to experience the best lighting conditions at any given location in the world. September in the UK alone is an attractive proposition for photographers and here are some simple techniques s to ensure you make the most of this beautiful hour.

Shoot fast smartly –   keep in mind the window of opportunity is small so plan ahead. But don’t rush it so you lose all your technique and photography prowess!
Calculate the Golden Hour – following on from the last point you can maximise your golden hour efficiency by planning ahead. By having an idea of what subjects you want to shoot and calculating precisely when the Golden Hour occurs where you list. We recommend the Golden Hour App – it’s now available as a universal app on iPhone and iPad so you can take the sun wherever you go.

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Use Wide Aperture -never does an image deserve to be shot wide open more so than what the Golden Hour presents. Tip – Try and master the beautiful Bokeh technique during these times of the day.
Stay With It – Changes in light during the Golden Hour occur pretty fast so bare this mind when shooting the landscape – keep shooting for the whole hour to give you variations.
Adjust White Balance – Set your white balance to cloudy, otherwise you risk neutralising the wonderful golden glow.

Golden Hour Photography | The Social Picture

There are some Flickr groups dedicated to the Golden or Magic Hour which you can visit at

We love fashion photography during the Golden Hour and if you want to benefit from this magical lighting for your next campaign please get in touch with us today.

Golden Hour Photography
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Golden Hour Photography
September means one thing for photographers, the beginning of capturing the elusive Golden Hour.
The Social Picture