Instagram: 5 Tips to make the most of Golden Hour

Step up your Instagram feed and make the most of golden hour glow with the following top tips….

If you’ve ever looked out of your window and instantly wanted to take a photo of the sky – it’s likely you were looking out at golden hour. Often known as ‘golden light photography’ or ‘magic hour photography’, golden hour is a short period in the day when the sun is low in the sky and fills the landscape with that breath-taking golden glow.

This usually occurs just after sunrise or just before sunset and is dependent on a few factors including your location, the season and weather conditions – but it typically lasts an hour. It’s one of the most perfect natural lightings to shoot in and will allow you to capture some unique, eye-catching photos.

A photo expert at CEWE, said: “Golden hour is one of the most beautiful hours during the day. It presents so many wonderful opportunities to take stunning photographs and really deserves to be made the most of. Whether you want to capture a landscape, a self-portrait or the natural beauty it brings, there are some really simple things you can do to capture that golden hour glow.

“The natural, warm, golden light offers a stunning glow that can take your photos to a new level. If you’re searching for a way to add a new dimension to your Instagram feed and shake up your photography, shooting during the golden hour is a great place to start.”

Here are CEWE’s top five expert tips to make the most of golden hour:

  • Time is of the essence: As the name indicates, golden hour literally only lasts for an hour! This means that you don’t have long to capture that perfect shot. Ideally, if you really want to make the most of this small window of opportunity, try to plan ahead. Set up and plan what you want to capture about an hour in advance. This will give you time to focus on the shot itself as soon as golden hour strikes.
  • Make the most of the varied lighting: One of the best parts of golden hour is the versatility it offers. Try to make the most of varied lighting and get creative with your photography. Experiment with silhouettes and backlighting to create a halo effect or sunflares (created when the sun directly hits your camera lens).
  • Shoot without flash: Using flash when taking photos during golden hour will leave your photos unnecessarily dark. This will take away from the gentle, golden natural light that you really want to capture. It’s best to shoot without flash and let that golden glow speak for itself.
  • Invest in a tripod: This doesn’t have to be anything expensive, in fact it could even be a makeshift one! If you can position your camera in the same place, it will allow you to take consistent photos of the same scene. This is really useful for scenic and landscape photography as it provides a wide variety of shots to choose from for the final edit by capturing the varying hues and skies that golden hour brings.
  • Gather as much content as you can: As the light changes so rapidly throughout golden hour, it’s a good idea to keep shooting continuously to gather a vast amount of content. This allows you to capture a wide variety of photos from just one shoot.

Capturing Wildlife

This time of year not only provides us with that glorious golden hour, but it also gives us an opportunity to capture surrounding wildlife and animals that are out enjoying the weather too. Whether it’s our own pets or wild animals, they can make the perfect focus for some unique photography. The key to photographing wildlife during golden hour is to position your subject in front of the light source, allowing you to capture striking images of them.

Scenic silhouette style shots

The way that the light falls during golden hour means beautiful silhouettes are created when photographing people, that make for really unique photographs. Whether it’s a couple in the distance or a family photo – make sure you make the most of this natural, lighting technique.

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Chris Price