The featured photograph today is of the Widnes to Runcorn Silver Jubilee bridge. It is one of my favourite shots. It represents Sunset – a time of day, in line with today’s title. I took the shot with my Pentax K-1 36 MP camera using a 24-70 mm f/2.8 lens at 35 mm and f/13. The ISO was 100 and the shutter speed 2.5 seconds.
To show the difference that the time of day can make, look at this photograph of the same bridge taken the same day, from only a few yards away but 56 minutes earlier.
The light at Sunrise can change just as dramatically and often more rapidly. This photograph was taken at 06:58 behind the Plas y Brenin Mountain Training centre at Capel Curig, Snowdonia. The moonlight is reflected in the lake.
Taken from a few yards to one side at 08:42, on the far side of the lakes (Llynau Mymbyr) the details in the slopes of the Snowdon Horseshoe range are now much more clearly defined.
Summer photography in the hills after mid-morning also means you will have to work with heat haze. This tends to blur and to “blue” distant hills and trees etc. The human eye interprets this gradient of warm to cold colour as a measure of distance so, in a photograph this is a sort of proxy for depth of field. The effect is at the cost of sharpness and detail.
At sunrise and sunset you will usually get softer light, beautiful colours, pleasing shadows and textures – and often calmer water for reflections. In the Autumn the gold, orange, yellow and brown tones of leaves can yield magical photographs. In winter soft, untrodden snow or children playing games in the snow are a gift to capture. Spring brings blossom, new foliage and buds. Even the harsh midday sun of summer can offer silhouettes and sharp contrasts of deep shadows framing bright buildings.
Ness Gardens on the Wirral Peninsula in Merseyside at Springtime.
As daylight disappears, the night brings new opportunities such as light trails, cityscapes and astrophotography.
Light trails from a bridge at Ravenhead, St Helens, Merseyside
Cityscapes are, for me, one of the most interesting types of photography
Canning Dock, Liverpool by night
Astrophotography is fairly specialised. I can’t afford the type of equipment needed to capture nebulae etc. Milky Way photography is more accessible in some ways but needs clear, dark skies and the galactic core can only be photographed during late spring to late summer.
Twr Mawr on Ynys Llanddwyn, Anglesey below the Milky Way
I’ll say more about the techniques and settings that I used for some of the above types of photographs in later blogs. Tomorrow, I’ll continue my generalised rambling but I’ll be starting to talk about aspects of position, angle and composition – possibly over three days or so.