The sun…. it brings us warmth, beach days, and vitamin D. Usually we love it, but probably not the past couple of days with the heatwave. The sun is a double edge sword for any photographer - we need it, but just not too much of it! This month’s tip - FIND THE SHADE! The bright sun causes sharp shadows and unflattering lines across faces. It makes people squint and can show every blemish. Think about putting a flashlight underneath your face in the dark… scary, huh? When the sun is above us, it causes the same strong shadows. When you take pictures in the shade, you are using the light but it is diffused in the shadow. I use trees and buildings to block out the sun, and place my subjects in it’s shadow. The “Golden Hour” is another way to stay away from the bright sun. The Golden Hour is one hour after the sun rises and one hour before the sun sets. This is the best time to take photographs because the sun produces a soft beautiful light.
Here are some examples of lighting situations:
The above picture was taken during the “golden hour.” The sun was still a little too bright for my taste, but notice the warmer tones. There aren’t any shadows on their faces, but the shadows elsewhere are distracting. Right after I took this picture, a cloud covered the sun and we got this picture:
I definitely like the second photograph better. Hope this tip helps while photographing this summer!