If landscape photographers had their “drathers”, they’d rather shoot during the golden light hours surrounding sunrise or sunset and with an abundance of dramatic clouds filling the sky. This allows Mother Nature to do the heavy lifting for them. The photographer need only arrange the elements within the viewfinder into a pleasing composition to create a stunning image. Even a novice can excel at photography under those circumstances.
That all changes on a bright, cloudless day – especially around noontime. The high sun casts a flat light that reveals little form, shape or texture and the bare sky adds minimal interest to the scene. Consequently, most scenic photographers avoid this time of day and for good reason. Better to wait until the conditions become more stimulating.
Of course, limiting photography to an hour or so in the early morning or late afternoon is, well, limiting. It turns even the most skilled photographer into a one trick pony and can zap the creative juices right out of the artist. I know, and plead guilty as charged.
One of the benefits of living in Scarborough is its close proximity to the beaches. My wife and I take our dog to Pine Point beach several times a week to let her run free. I seldom take my camera along since I already have about a bazillion pictures of the dog roaming the seaside. Besides, the light is usually dull and the sky very lackluster when we schedule these excursions – neither of which is conducive to my style of photography.
But yesterday I decided to lug the camera along in hopes of finding something interesting to photograph during this uninspiring time of day and lo and behold I discovered that if I look hard enough, those things do exist. People simply being people and other people’s dogs just being dogs can make good subjects.
No dog is as cute as mine but this one is a close second
The epitome of a room with a view overlooking the ocean
I’m not about to give up golden hour photography but I do feel the need to expand my repertoire by shooting under different and more challenging situations. As the saying goes. you can teach a dog new tricks, so there is hope.