Introspectives #27

As a photographer who invariably misses the golden hours, it could be said I should not bother with the camera. Maxim: “avoid taking photographs during the midday hours because of the harsh lighting.” But then I would have missed the melting dog!

dark chocolate dog melting in the sun

“Firstly, let’s change the word “harsh” to “deep” when we describe the shadows cast by the midday sunlight. These deep shadows can add a whole lot of interest to a photograph when they become an element of the picture” f stop training

Before I get on to shadows, only bright sunlight can keep the whites sparkling white but to do so its necessary to consider the ISO: “instead of upping the shutter speed to compensate for the high f-stop, check your ISO setting” – all these were shot on 160.

The reds roar with saturation in bright light…

and although the clear skies are a little dull in terms of detail, the Thames could never look so blue in golden light. Clean waters now but often muddy looking because of its sandy bottom, wiped tidally four times a day

One tip for photographers at midday is to shoot from the shadows – there is always a side street to offer respite and perhaps some interesting action but I’ve not got the hang of the camera’s struggle with metering exposure when given dark to light contrasts. I need to be more mindful of where the light source is and perhaps bracket some shots on different exposures. There is a ‘vibrance’ tool in Lightroom which can zap the intensity of muted shades without overdoing the brighter ones. Might need to make use of this!

If we struggle with colour in bright sunlight, a good tip is to switch to black and white. We lose the moods that colour conveys to an image and gain the  emphasisis on shapes, patterns, texture

So much of the action takes place outside of the golden hours. Tourist boats empty, dock, and everyone goes home so these shots which capture the  vivacity of London’s tourism can only be seen in broad daylight.

Colour comes to the river Thames in the midday sun!

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Introspectives: Thinking out loud with an aim to improve and learn more about photography. Hence the images are not always for show – feedback is welcome.