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Author Topic: 6 Tips for Taking Great Sunset Photos  (Read 2690 times)
Lisa Nikodym
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« on: January 04, 2005, 01:01:54 PM »
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Can I add one more, which I think may be the most important?

Go find a sunset somewhere interesting.

A nice sunset with a generic hill & tree in the foreground has been done to death. A sunset with some ancient greek ruins silhouetted in the foreground, or over the rim of a steaming volcanic crater, or over the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon... you get the idea. :cool:

But thanks for the other suggestions.  Good ones.

Lisa
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howard smith
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« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2005, 01:22:27 PM »
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"Go find a sunset somewhere interesting."

This is pretty photographer dependant.  What interests one may be boring to another.  A city sky line might ruin (or make) a sunset for some.

I live in the Corn Capital of the World.  Nothing like a silo.
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howard smith
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« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2005, 01:27:22 PM »
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Bryan, I own but usually don't like or use split ND. But here in Corn Country, where you can see the Grand Tetons from the top of a silo on a clear day (just joking), I use split ND very effectively. They also work for seascapes where the horizon is level and unbroken.

Galen Rowell used them, sometimes better than others. I find the reflections brighter than the sky and the trees above the horizon almost black a problem, even if from a "Father Figure" photographer.
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gary_hendricks
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« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2005, 12:00:08 PM »
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Try these six tricks to capture powerful photos imbued with the beauty and positive feelings of sunsets.

1. Always get a full view
Position yourself on a beach or a highpoint to allow an unrestricted view of the sun for maximum impact. An alternative is to capture the sun falling between trees, next to an attractive monument or reflecting off the water. Make sure your photo isn't too busy with other objects that distract attention.

2. Just keep shooting
More attempts will increase your chances of getting the right results. As the sun gets lower, it tends to get redder as well, so your results should improve in the final moments of a sunset.

3. Be on the lookout for clouds
Sunsets on cloudy evenings are more colorful and interesting than sunsets on clear evenings. While you may not actually capture the sun itself in these photos, capturing an amazing variety of colors and rich cloudy textures will make up for it.

4. Shoot off-center
Bring more life to your sunset photos by positioning the horizon away from the center of your photo. Instead, keep it near the bottom of the shot to dramatically highlight the sky. In combination with this, leaving some foreground in the shot, such as a person or a tree, will give greater interest and give you a great opportunity to work on silhouette photographs.

5. Try to use multiple exposure settings
Your camera's light meter will often under-expose sunsets because there is still quite a bit of light, so bracketing (taking several shots at different exposures) may be needed to find the perfect exposure. A little under-exposure can help to make the colors of a sunset richer. If you want to include the details of a person in the foreground, try using fill flash and night mode. This will bring out their details while still allowing enough exposure to get rich colors remember to use a tripod in this case to avoid camera shake.

6. Zoom In
It is effective to use a long focal length for sunsets, because the sun will appear much larger and more impressive in the sky. Either choose the longest optical zoom lens setting on your camera or use a longer telephoto lens on your SLR.
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howard smith
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« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2005, 01:18:44 PM »
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4. Shoot off-center
Bring more life to your sunset photos by positioning the horizon away from the center of your photo. Instead, keep it near the bottom of the shot to dramatically highlight the sky.

Like maybe put yje horizon, maybe a third or so rom the bottom?  (Couldn't resist.)
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BryanHansel
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« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2005, 01:01:52 PM »
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I'd like to add a tip:  Use an ND grad filter in a way that keeps the sunset colors and leaves detail in the foreground.
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