Sunray in Sanur, Bali
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Weekly Photo Challenge: Golden Hour

I think I am a photographic hobbyist, who likes to take photographs of all occasions and with all kinds of camera devices, be it an iPhone/iPad or even a DSLR camera.  I know all about photography terms… , a little bit anyway I think.  But when weekly photo challenge says “Golden Hour” and people’s submittals  for this include sunset pictures, I question myself: what’s the difference between Sunset and Golden hour? What is the definition of Golden hour? And then, there is the question of Blue Hour?

Sunset at Mengwi - is this golden hour, sunset or blue hour?

Sunset at Mengwi – is this golden hour, sunset or blue hour?

Wikipedia says that golden hour is:  When the sun is near or below the horizon, sunlight travels through more of the atmosphere, reducing the intensity of the direct light, so that more of the illumination comes from indirect light from the sky (Thomas 1973, 9–13), reducing the lighting ratio. However, there is another explanation of Golden Hour as of “Light Stalking“, that says: “the time just before sunset and after sunrise, or rather: “the time of day when the sun is at its weakest and a less harsh position in the sky.

Thus, I think this is golden hour:

An hour before sunset at Mykonos, where the sunlight touches the white painted buildings and created a warm colour on the buildig

An hour before sunset at Mykonos, where the sunlight touches the white painted buildings and creates a warm colour on the buildings

shooting to the other direction from where the sun set, the colour of the sky/cloud as well as the building a far become interesting, I bet this is not yet sunset...

Shooting from the other direction from where the sun sets, the colour of the sky/cloud as well as the far off buildings become more interesting, I bet this is not yet sunset…

What I love from the above picture is the colour of the cloud. It has more colour,  a subtle pink purplish colour.

With those explanations I conclude that Golden Hour is not the same with Sunset; as sunset is when the sun touches the earth:

Shooting toward the sun, I think this is sunset time.

Shooting toward the sun, I think this is sunset time –

And another occasion when the sun leaves the earth at sunrise:

Sunrise in Doha, where the sun was just behind that building... or this is only a few seconds before sunrise?

Sunrise in Doha, where the sun was just behind that building… or this is only a few seconds before sunrise?

Correct me if I am wrong,  my view is golden hour does not happen in the afternoon, it is when the sun is about to set, it also happens after the sun rises:

Approximately an hour after sunrise, the colour of the light still gives a warm shadow/reflection to the dhows

Approximately an hour after sunrise, the colour of the light still gives a warm shadow/reflection to the dhows.

Around two hours after the sun rises, the reflection of the sun still very interesting against Doha's skyscrapers.

Around two hours after the sun rises, the reflection of the sun still very interesting against Doha’s skyscrapers.

However, my last question above is not being answered: What is blue hour?

Filed under: eJournal, Online Life, Travel Notes

About the Author

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I used to live as an expat and travel around the Middle East. After 10 years working in the Arabian Gulf I am now retired and living in the UK with my British husband but still retain my interests of further travels and exploring new horizons in Europe.

18 Comments

  1. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: The Golden Hour | unexpectedincommonhours

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  5. Pingback: Weekly photo challenge: The golden hour | The (Urban-Wildlife) Interface

  6. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: The Golden Hour | My Kind of Happiness

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