Best Time of Day to Take Pictures
Last Weekend I was in Miami and take an afternoon off to go take photos in Miami Beach. I was planning to get shots of hotels and specifically elements of South Beach’s famous art deco architecture. The problem was that late afternoon was a bad time to take photos since most of the facades along Ocean drive were being back-lit by the sun at the time. I thought I’d write up a little something about the best time of day to take pictures.
Since the direction of my desired shots was westward-facing, having the sun at about 60 degrees above and pointing my way was producing washed out shots and giving me sun spots. After a few shots I realized my folly. Here are some examples:
If you’re planning to take some photos, make sure you time the sun correctly and avoid having sunshine directly above, or at a direct angle of your camera, especially when taking shots of things you can’t physically move.
Early mornings and late afternoons (right before the sunrise) usually provide the best lighting. For any time of day, though – make sure the sun is at your back as much as possible. In the mornings it will be at your back if you’re facing West. In the evenings it will be at your back if you’re facing East.
Here’s my crudely hand-drawn illustration – in an attempt to live up to this site’s name: