A Guide to Photographing the Light of Sunrises and Sunsets

One of our authors, Christopher O’Donnell, has just released another photography eBook entitled The Golden Hours: A Guide to Photographing the Light of Sunrises and Sunsets. This eBook was written to help guide photographers through the unique challenges that this light presents. Many photographers will often note that their sunrise and sunset images rarely represent the scene they observed. By detailing the steps he goes through to create his images – both in the field and in the digital dark room – Christopher explains why this is so, and more importantly, how to transcend the disparity between your view and your results, allowing you to create realistic images of this beautiful light.

Cover to The Golden Hours eBook, a photography guide to sunrises and sunsets with additional eBook on exposure blending.

The “golden hours” refer to the window of time when the sun is at its lowest point in the sky, just before it sets or right after it rises. As the sun nears the horizon, the light begins to dramatically transform the landscape before you. The atmosphere becomes thick and golden, shadows are lengthened, and highlights are brightened. Soon, your scene develops texture, depth, and becomes a stunning show of light. It’s a highly-coveted time to photograph the landscape, but is also challenging to many photographers as the uniqueness of this light requires some specialized knowledge to capture.

Page preview of The Golden Hours eBook, a guide to photographing sunrises and sunsets.

In this eBook, you will find detailed solutions to the challenges this light presents – from compositions to exposure difficulties – so you can begin to photograph the golden hours with confidence and accuracy. With this new knowledge, you can focus on enjoying your photography while expanding your creative horizons.


Specific topics he covers include:

      • Choosing a Location: How to find prime locations for the golden hours, what tools he uses to help him scout, and special considerations to take to help you select the best vantage points.


      • Finding Interest:  How to compose your image, find balance, and unlock your creative potential when framing your scene.


      • Judging Your Light:  This section explains the unique exposure challenges that the golden hours present, and multiple ways to overcome them – allowing you to choose one that compliments your workflow.


      • Tripods and Focusing: Special considerations to take when focusing your image, and the importance of image stablilization for the golden hours.


      • Creativity with Aperture: The golden hour light has a unique ability to transform the landscape, and your depth of field can greatly affect how this light appears. This section shows the creative power your aperture can have during the golden hours.


        • Alternative Compositions: To conclude, this section discusses how to take full advantage of the golden hours and explore different compositions that one would not normally consider, inspiring you to think beyond the mainstream confines and tap into your creativity.

Table of Contents

Table of contents preview for The Golden Hours eBook

He explains the entire process of photographing the golden hours – from choosing a location and camera techniques, to the post processing workflow in your digital darkroom. From start to finish, this comprehensive eBook will guide you step-by-step by detailing the workflow Christopher uses to capture the golden hours.

Page previews for The Golden Hours eBook for landscape photographers

Exposure Blending: The Complete Guide from Camera to Post Process

As an added bonus, you’ll also receive a copy of his popular guide on exposure blending – the post processing technique he goes through to create his golden hour images. In this step-by-step guide, he covers the entire process of exposure blending – from auto-bracketing in the field, to combining different exposures in post process.

The cover to Exposure Blending, an eBook guide to auto-bracketing and blending exposures in Photoshop.

Exposure blending is an innovative way to combine different exposures within the same image – something that is often needed when photographing the golden hours. He dedicates over 20 full-page spreads to this subject, explaining how to photograph a scene for exposure blending, and then how to import these files into Photoshop (with screenshots) for blending to create the final image.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents for the exposure blending section of The Golden Hours eBook

Page previews to Exposure Blending, an additional eBook included with The Golden Hours purchase

Find out more about this comprehensive guide on Christopher’s website.

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2 Comments on "A Guide to Photographing the Light of Sunrises and Sunsets"

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I wanted to be a good photographer, but in our country there was no school to train, I’m trying to take a lots of photos everyday to be the best one.

Peter Turner

I have a Nikon P510 digital camera. What I need is good instruction on how to use it. Most sites are dedicated to SLR cameras.

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