Sunday, 14 September 2014

You Can Colour My World With Sunshine Every Day

We've established before on the blog that all colour comes from how sunlight hits and bounces off surfaces. Sunlight is white and made up of wavelengths of all colours.
Late afternoon sunlight firing up the clover, September 2013, 3.17 pm
Wetland grasses at Ashmore, March 2009, 5.24 pm
Pink Floyd demonstrated on the album cover to Dark Side of The Moon that you can use a prism to split sunlight into these various colour components. Of course a rainbow is the same thing, the refraction of sunlight through raindrops. As the Hawaiians say, 'no rain, no rainbows'.
After the rain and just before some more as seen by the clouds rolling in,
Fraser Island April 2005, late afternoon
The colour that we perceive the sun, light itself and objects to be depends on how much atmosphere sunlight has to travel through. The sun is bright and white at noon and the sky blue as the sunlight bounces off the atmosphere at a lower angle causing the blue wavelengths to scatter. In the afternoons the sky becomes a rainbow of colours because the angle of the earth means sunlight travels through the atmosphere at a high angle to reach our eyes scattering different wavelengths. Bored yet? I hear you - make with the photos!
Danny caught in the sun's last rays, Mount Tamborine, 5.44 pm September 2009
This beautiful light of the late afternoon is commonly referred to by photographers as the golden hour, that time before twilight when the low rays of the sun cast an intense yellow glow over the land.
Treasury building in Brisbane, July 2014, 5.56 pm
Long Road at Mount Tamborine, November 2009, 5.48 pm
Late afternoon on Waikiki Beach, April 2005
The shadows are longer and much less intense than the middle of the day making for beautiful images and a much easier job balancing light and shade. This is the time I like to book in all of my portraits and if a bride and groom could be steered in the direction of a late afternoon wedding I was all over it.

Here Michael and Teresa can be seen backlit by the strong afternoon sun on Beacon Road in Mount Tamborine. As we had turned to drive back I stopped by the side of the road and let the sun bathe them in it's full glow for the second shot. Unfortunately my strongest memory of this shoot is pushing over my tripod to which was attached my favourite and most expensive flash breaking the footings off it. $$$.
July 2009; 4.37 pm and 4.48 pm.
The beautiful Cerkan and Jayda at Cascade Gardens in Surfers Paradise.
November 2006, 6.03 pm
This amazing wedding took place in Castle Rumble on the south side of Brisbane. The afternoon sun streamed in through the stained glass windows giving an otherworldly glow to our Knight and his Fair Damsel.
Eliza and Richard, October 2005, 4.50 pm
Here's a selection of more afternoon delights to colour your world today.

Rainbow lorikeets photographed in our front yard, late afternoon in April of 2013. On the left I'm shooting up in the tree's canopy into the strong afternoon sun and overexposing to correctly expose the bird. On the right you can see a birdie bathed in the strong yellow light with the sun behind me.

Miller playing in our front yard in the late afternoon of May this year, about 4.30 pm. He is standing in the shadow of trees on our front boundary and the strong afternoon sunlight is coming across behind him to light up the garden. 

Here is Miller again on the beach in June 2013. He is standing in the full orangey-yellow glow of the late afternoon sun with a long, trailing shadow from the sun's low angle.

My favourite boy teenagers on their 15th birthday in October of 2012, positioned so the overexposed setting sun behind them would give them a fiery halo of light around their hairline.

The scrumptious Ella on Fraser Island for the occasion of her naming ceremony. Taken at 3.44 pm in May of 2007 giving a beautiful soft glow of light and lovely long shadows.

Shot from the Currumbin Surf Club function room prior to a wedding in April of 2012. 3.58 pm.

Sunset on Mount Tamborine shot from the Rotary Club Lookout on Main Western Road. It was summer but a bitterly cold wind could whip up there at any time and almost blow you over the cliff. This was taken at 6.19 pm, in late January.

Ah! This was taken at Escondido in San Diego, out the front of my brother's old place. Taken in early December 2010 in the late afternoon with the sun lighting up some latecoming autumn leaves. 

More wonderful travel memories. Grant Street in San Francisco; the strong afternoon light streams in a haze through the city skyscrapers. September 2007, late afternoon about 6 pm.

A couple of examples of using afternoon light to creative effect. Here I'm on the Goodwill Bridge joining QUT (Queensland University of Technology) to Southbank in Brisbane. The very strong afternoon light allowed me to silhouette my couple and add interest with long shadows and the bright reflection of the sun on the bridge supports. January 2010, 4.58 pm. To my annoyance I left a very expensive tripod quick release mount on this bloody bridge somewhere during this shoot. Funny what you recall when you think about places you've been.

Here I'm with the same couple in the grounds of QUT letting the glow of the sun fall full on them and focusing in to make the lovely long shadows the subject. 4.50 pm.

As I've shown before the strong afternoon sun can be filtered through something for a spectacular backdrop and to soften the light on the subject. This is Kate and Gary and I think it's New Farm Park in Brisbane. Hey it was August of 2007. 2.53 pm.

Using the afternoon glow to full effect on Golden Beach near Byron Bay. July of 2006 at 4.14 pm.

The beautiful Hayley and Emmit on the Marina at Main Beach here on the Gold Coast. The almost set sun nicely lights up the railing and bounces off the top of the boats bringing attention to the couple and giving them a halo of light around their hairlines. Without the gentle pop of flash I've added here this couple would be in silhouette because I have exposed to keep some detail in the sunset sky and almost no ambient light remains behind me to light them. February 2006, 6.23 pm.

This is one of my favourite shots of this type. Everything works together here to make a great shot. The young girl gently ripples the water with her toes while her hair is on fire from the low afternoon sun. The sun is at the right angle to give a reflective glare to the water's surface bringing attention to and nicely framing our subject. A picture of the innocence of childhood. Taken at Burleigh, December 2009, 5.29 pm. 

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