Photographing in the golden hour

The golden hour produces stunning early evening light for relaxed photos of you both. This light always remind me of long days off in the summer, bbqs, camping and outdoor adventures spent with friends in my youth. I always love using wheat fields and the countryside as I grew up in a beautiful rural area of Wiltshire.

Some photographer’s refer to the time before sunset as the golden hour, as it produces a wonderful side light from the sun which looks dramatically beautiful for most subjects. It produces long shadows and completely different visual effects depending on whether you shoot towards or away from the sunlight.

If you’re planning your wedding, you may want to consider when this hour will be and reserve 15 minutes or so to get a couple of photos of the two of you together. In winter this hour tends to be between 2-4pm and in summer it can be between 7-9pm. Check when sunset is on your wedding day and work an hour backwards from there. Your photographer should be able to advise you on this and how you can fit into your wedding day schedule.

It’s also nice to get away from it all for a moment after dinner, and have a moment together. By this time the formalities are usually over and you can relax a bit more, so take a moment to enjoy each other’s company now the nerves have settled and you’re beginning to enjoy a long and happy marriage!

Beth & Daniel Pre Wedding Shoot, Norbury Park, Great Bookham, Surrey

Shooting against the sun will create a flare in the lens and usually create a nice haze on the photo, picking out the edges of objects with a strong highlight.

Kizzie & Charlie, Buxted Park Hotel Wedding, Uckfield, East Sussex

Shooting at this time can create very high key images, with everything looking light and giving everything a light glow.

Sofie & Alan, East Dean Village Hall Wedding, Birling Gap, East Sussex

Shooting side onto the light also works well. The background glows in the light and the long shadows add some good contrast to the bright sunshine.

Of course, it’s not always possible! You may get less than desirable weather or not have time. You can always do things a bit later inside the venue with some flash photography instead!



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