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Old February 1st, 2011, 08:21 AM   #1
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Working out when golden hour(s) will be

Hi,

Here in the UK on a clear day we are getting lovely light in the morning and evening due to low winter sun. I guess the hour of good light relates to sunrise and sunset (and I guess the time of year may be relevant to). I can look up the sunset and sunrise easy enough but how long before sunset and after sunrise is the good light and is it at its best for an hour or is this a myth?

I am guessing the best light starts around an hour before sunset and an hour after sunrise but that's only a guess.

What is the accepted wisdom on this?

Regards,
Ben
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Old February 2nd, 2011, 03:28 AM   #2
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It really depends on how far north or south you are. The nature of the light can change very quickly over that period, so it can depend how daring you want to be. I wouldn't always even put it as long as an hour, more like 40 minutes in summer. In winter it can much longer, depending on your latitude.
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Old February 2nd, 2011, 01:56 PM   #3
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I find golden hour to be about 20 minutes. The key for me is setup early, stay late, and hope for good weather. Helps if you have a grip to move stuff around as you're trying to get the shot. Setup and takedown of lights needs to move FAST.
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Old February 2nd, 2011, 03:19 PM   #4
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It really depends on the angle of the sun coming up or down over the curvature of the earth. That means that it is dependent on what latitude you are on. Here in northern California near San Francisco, I'm getting about 40 minutes of great light in the morning and a little under 30 minutes in the evening. That's when the sky is that perfect golden or pink color (depending on the air quality) and the sun is just glowing. For shooting we have about 3 hours of good light in the morning and about 2 hours in the evening when the sun isn't too harsh.

If you've got an iPhone there is a great application called Sun Seeker that uses augmented reality to show you where the sun will be at any given time and location. It uses your gps and camera to project where the sun will be at some future date and time for what you're looking at. Check it out. I don't know if it works everywhere but it works here and is a great tool for shooters.

-Garrett
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Old February 2nd, 2011, 09:01 PM   #5
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I use an iPhone app called MagicHour - works quite well.

Edit - I just noticed that the name was recently changed to VelaClock Sun/Moon with the latest upgrade.
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Old February 4th, 2011, 02:41 AM   #6
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You could check this out:

The Golden Hour Calculator / Sunrise and Sunset information for photographers
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Old February 4th, 2011, 02:51 AM   #7
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It may be worth doing a little defining here. Golden Hour is generally thought of as when the sun is low on the horizon and warm in color, which makes for beautiful backlight situation. Once the ball drops below the horizon, you are into Magic Hour, where the light is soft yet still has a certain directionality and an ever-raising color temperature. Golden Hour can actually be longer than an hour depending on the factors listed above but Magic Hour is usually shorter, although with cameras getting more and more sensitive it's effectively lengthened a bit in recent years.
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Old February 5th, 2011, 01:23 PM   #8
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We have a few apps loaded on an iPad that help us with exterior shoots.
If you have an iPad or iPhone they are not that expensive and come in very handy.

All the Best!

Dave
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Old February 6th, 2011, 04:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Papert View Post
Golden Hour can actually be longer than an hour depending on the factors listed above but Magic Hour is usually shorter, although with cameras getting more and more sensitive it's effectively lengthened a bit in recent years.
Yes, magic hour is a mad rush and you usually initially set up the camera and lens aperture for how it will be by the end, so everything looks consistent.
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Old February 8th, 2011, 02:14 AM   #10
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Curiosity:
Do u have a frame or video link for the AMgic hour example?
Clear to me what looks like the golden hour!
Thx;)
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Old February 11th, 2011, 01:20 PM   #11
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How about something like this.
Attached Thumbnails
Working out when golden hour(s) will be-01-20-03-02.png  
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Old February 23rd, 2011, 08:00 AM   #12
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Re: Working out when golden hour(s) will be

I thought golden hour meant like 4x base pay.

Oh, different kind of golden hour...
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