Light in Landscape Photography Light in Landscape Photography

As a landscape photographer you are always ‘searching for the great light’; the light and moreso the quality of light is all important. It’s no secret that the best light falls between blue hour to golden hour in the morning and the reverse in the evening; golden hour through to blue hour. Here the light is soft and smooth with subtle gradations from light to shadow and tinged with beautiful tones, textures and colours. In contrast, the middle of the day when the sun is bright and more overhead bring harsh light and sharp, dark shadows. The problem with shooting during these good periods is that you must be at your location early and fully prepared, as the light changes and disappears very quickly – blink and you’ll miss the shot!

Of course there is the other obvious problem for some who think that 5 o’clock comes but once in a day, but there aren’t too many suggestion I could give to help on that one!

Different light, maybe at a different time of the day, can change who entire look and feel of a landscape. Below are three similar shots from Mt Bromo Volcano shot, firstly at dawn, slightly later at sunrise and then in the afternoon as the sun was setting.



This works quite well for the landscape photographer as chances are pretty good that if the mountain was there in the morning, it will still be there in the afternoon! How did this relate to the portrait photographer? Can we say to people we are photographing ‘Now if you can just stand there till this afternoon the light will be perfect?’ Of course not; maybe that’s something we can look at next time.

Please feel free to email me or post something in the comment section if there’s a topic you would like addressed in the blog.

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