Golden Hour In Maia

golden hour

Photographers get a little neurotic about golden hour, that magical time near the end of the day when sunlight is soft and diffused. While normal people gaze off into the distance and sigh, “Oh that’s a beautiful sky… what shall we have for dinner?”, photographers are checking watches to calculate how time there is left to grab equipment and run to the nearest viewpoint or landscape or whatever’s close by to shoot, throwing a “Will catch up with you later!” over the shoulder as you watch them disappear.

Guilty as charged.

Sometimes all a photographer wants is one shot, racing for the light as it disappears over the horizon. The sun is a slippery character, hiding behind buildings and mountains and ungainly, immovable objects. Nobody understands what the hurry is, it’s not as if the sun is never coming back, right? But despite its predictable daily appearance (above 30,000ft, anyway), shooting opportunities don’t always present themselves when you want and sunlight is notoriously fickle — kind one day and unkind the next, lets clouds interfere, at times flat and moody.

Arguing with the sun only makes a photographer appear more neurotic, so bear with them and let them chase after golden hour, whether it’s at the beginning or at the end of the day. If they want to get up at an ungodly hour to reach The Spot in time for that post-sunrise glow or ignore the hunger pangs of late afternoon to get The Shot before the sun sets, for them it’s a small price to pay.

If you think this sounds familiar, I’ve talked about golden hour before or posted photos of it, here in 2010 and here in 2008 and here’s a post from a decade back. There are probably lots of Golden Hour posts that haven’t been tagged as such.

And speaking of neurotic, golden hour can make for an indecisive editor, too. See, instead of having to choose between these two edits of the same spot, I’m copping out and posting both: the one above is warmer in tone, closer to how golden the hour actually was today, and the version below is a bit on the cooler side. I also have different versions of the shot on the bottom, but I’m limiting my neuroses to two versions of one shot, otherwise I’d never leave my computer.

I think we can all agree that would be silly… after all, who’s going to shoot tomorrow’s golden hour?

golden hour

golden hour