Tips + Techniques

Watch: How to Take Better Golden Hour Portraits Using Only Natural Light

September 26, 2017

By Greg Scoblete

Manny Ortiz | YouTube

The golden hour may be the most prized piece of the photographic clock, but shooting portraits during a rising or setting using only natural light presents its own set of challenges.

In this video, photographer Manny Ortiz breaks down a few handy approaches to getting the best golden hour photos using only natural light.

Key takeaways:

  • if you’re using the sun as your main light, have your subject look down to avoid squinting or bring a pair of sunglasses
  • alternatively, you can have your subject stare into the sun but close their eyes while you count to three–on three, your subject opens their eyes and you pop the shutter
  • pose your subject so that their head blocks the sun, it will deliver a nice silhouette
  • alternatively, put the sun in the frame–you’ll risk some lens flare but that could produce a nice dramatic effect.