Take Better Sunrise and Sunset Photos

Sunrise and sunset photos are among the most photographed things in the world. It is a natural thing for anyone to shoot these because they are spectacular. But I see a lot of sunrise and sunset photos that are poorly exposed or just shot wrong. Here’s an easy way to shoot them.

A Simple Exposure Technique

First, have your camera set to single-point metering in the center. Do not use the automatic settings or multiple metering points. It also helps to have center-weighted averaging set, but this is not critical.

When you shoot a sunrise or sunset photo, you will be tempted to aim right at the sun, depress the shutter button half-way for exposure metering, and then fully depress it and take the shot. What you will end up with are a bright sun and a dark foreground.

Instead, aim just above, right, or left of the sun. By doing this, when you depress the shutter button partially to get the exposure metering, your camera will meter off of the darker area near the sun and will lighten the foreground.  With the shutter button partially depressed, move to compose the scene and then fully depress the button to take the shot. Try this several times by metering at different positions outside of the sun, and look at the results.

You will get better shots of beautiful sunrises and sunsets this way and with not very much effort.


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