Sunset Photography: Taking the Best Sunset Pictures | Zarmina I | Skillshare

Sunset Photography: Taking the Best Sunset Pictures

Zarmina I, Leadership, Design, and Photography

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8 Lessons (27m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Planning Ahead

    • 3. Composition

    • 4. Focal Length

    • 5. Mood and Context

    • 6. Exposure, and Basics of Photography

    • 7. Editing

    • 8. Class Project


About This Class


Hey there:)

I'm back and I'm better than ever.

Haha, I'm just kidding.

Anyways, welcome to my class. In this class, we'll cover some basics of photography and dive right into our sunset photography. We'll be going over exposure, camera techniques, editing, composition, colours and much more. This class is open to anyone, beginners and professionals alike. These are a few tips that work for me and I'm very excited to share them with you all.

We will go through one of my own sunset photoshoots that'll give you a basic understanding of the concepts we cover in class. Not to mention, we will also cover editing and use photoshop.

A little bit about me :)

I'm a self-taught photographer, and student from Canada. I do a lot of landscape, nature, and fashion photography. While you're here, why not give me a follow on Instagram;) zarmina_101

None of the pictures in the presentation were taken by me. Please note they were taken from various online sources as well as the work of other wonderful photographers.


1. Introduction: Hello, everyone. Welcome to this new class on sense it photography growing up, I think sunsets have always left us speechless. I think there, ah, phenomena that we could probably never get tired off. And they're just absolutely beautiful. And that's why I've been capturing them in the best angle in the best manner is so important. So here it iss welcome to this class in this class will not only be going over what to do before a sense that photo shoot, but also what to do during and after. So will also be covering a lot of the editing a swell Aziz, simple principles of composition and looking at some technical things to like, you know, modes on a camera. So this is just a great class. It gives you a complete guide on taking great sense of pictures. And you could also use this guide for Sunrise pictures. Join this class today to learn more about sunset photography 2. Planning Ahead: Hi, everyone. Welcome to my class on sensitive photography today in this class, we're gonna talk about best time techniques and tips for the best Sunset Pictures. Now the first thing that's most important for any form of photography, I believe ISS planning ahead, especially one capturing a sensa. It's important to plan ahead of time. You know, things like where you're taking the picture, what's unique about the location and even knowing things like, what time does the sense that actually happen? How is the weather for the day? Are you going to capture the sun more directly or more of the scenery behind it? I mean, that's the last part of something you can figure out at the location. But the first few parts of the weather, the sunset time, those air, very important to know. Now you can go to a website. It's called sunset sunrise dot com, and you congenital ate a schedule of sunsets. Last sunrise is for a whole month for your location. Um, so the reason why this is important is because you want to be at the location 20 minutes prior to the sunset and stay there until 20 minutes after the sunset. And in that time per year period you gonna have. You can capture the peak of the sense it as well. A zoo. Other moments after the sunset with nice, you know, purple e colors. So you know, it gives you a huge time range, and you can really figure out and capture many different types of shots. So, um, camera and lens, I'm using the Nikon D 5118 to 55 millimeter lens. So, um, the one thing about sunsets is it's important to shoot in manual mode. Um, and I'll be explaining why in the next few slides. So for sunsets, you can shoot a variety of Shaw's, um, some with longer shutter speed, longer focal laying, Um, eso depending on what type of picture you're trying to take. Um, it's even more important to have like, let's say, a couple of different types of lens maybe having the 18 to 55 something like the 200 millimeter lens. Um, so this could give you, you know, a variety of different shots, just in case you change your mind. So one example would be, let's say you want to take some sort of a landscape picture. You wanna have a longer shot over speed and a longer Focal Inc. So you would want to use the land lens that are 200 millimeter or above. And also, you're gonna need a tripod for this. Um, because these types of shots are on longer shutter speed. So, um, so if you see this like little effect with the water here, um, the water looks very smooth. And that's because of the longer shooters beat and you're able to capture the whole landscape. Ah, very well, because of the longer focal ing. Um, now going on, if you want to take more zoom and pictures of the sun, there's different things you want to do for that. But especially when you're capturing water, it's important to have long shutter speed because he adds this really nice move. The fact to the water 3. Composition: So composition. Yea. Okay, so for this you want to apply the rule of thirds. I mean, it's not always important to follow these rules and photography, but it's great to have them there. Um, when you want to just start off, You know, I think they're a great, um, I guess guides to you. So when it comes to capturing the son, Um, the reason why they tell you not to have the sun in the middle is because it creates a very mediocre type of image. And we don't really want something mediocre. Want something really amazing? So you don't always have to follow this rule of thirds. It's just a guide. So it is not always a month. Sometimes it's good to break photography rules. Um, because while if you have restrictions and you're just not going to be creative, so like, this picture here is an example of that, so you see that the sun is the center, But remember that this is not a landscape picture. It's more of macro photography, which means, um, having more close up shots. So this is a very close up shot of the sunset. Um, and as you can see, um, the reflection on the water, you know, it all adds, is really cool effect. So it's a very unique picture. It doesn't look mediocre because of the angle. Now, if you were to take a direct sunset picture with the sun in the middle more landscape, it is going to look a little mediocre. So, you know, trying to have more unique angles and really experimenting is, ah, an important tip for sunset photography. So, like this picture here is an example of that where it's not actually directed at the sunset , but the scenery behind the sunset. Sometimes that's even more beautiful in the sunset itself. Um, and that's because of the nice blue colors and then this orange nice colors. And then if you have a nice ah and I see view, um, it could also out of really great effect. So it's all about, you know, experimenting and, um, not keeping yourselves limited. So always be open to different angles and to ah, different views for the sunset photography 4. Focal Length: So now let's talk about focal length. So you know, focal length is a little bit of, ah, interesting concept. So, um, for a sense of photography, it's important to try, shoot, shoot, shoot at different focal lengths. So let's say you want to shoot wide angle like wide angle can create really amazing landscapes. Um, but the sun is usually smart, part small part of those images. If you want the son to be the main subject of your religion, then you want to zoom right in. So here's Ah, a little, I guess. Guide to the focal lengths so you could see a bunch of different focal links here, and you can see that little red house. It's very small in the 18 millimetre, and then you compared to the 300 millimeters. It looks really nice. Now. Here's one thing you want to keep in mind when it comes to focal length, so here's an example of that situation. So at 20 millimeter, you'll see that the face looks very bulged and almost cost a little. It almost kind of like has this facial distortion type of effect. And then at 200 millimeters, you see more of a balanced, I guess, sort of image where it's like there's no facial distortion. Um, over here, you see that there is that little bit of facial destruction. It doesn't look very appealing. I mean, it depends on the type of image we're trying to capture. If that's the type of image you're trying to capture, than is a great way to have. You know, I guess a smaller lens. But, um, if you wanna have, ah, the sunset to be the direct, you know, subject in the image you wanna have a lens that's like 200 millimeters or higher Just because we can get really close up to the sunset or, you know, really close up to our subject that's really far away. So that's why it's important. But if you're, um, I guess capturing a landscape you can even work with, like an 18 millimeter 55 millimeter. Um, and if you really want some sort of like a wide angle where it's like it looks really magnificent, you're capturing, ah, huge landscape, anyone to capture every part of it. Then it's better to also use the higher lens. So the 200 millimeters or the 300 millimeters. But keep in mind, you're gonna need a tripod for those words, okay, 5. Mood and Context: um, Now, let's talk about mood and context. I feel like this is an interesting topic. So we don't really consider this in photography a lot where we're like, Okay, what's the mood behind this picture? Because a lot of us today are very focused on getting good pictures. But that doesn't mean that just because we have a really nice sunset picture with great colors and great composition, um, that is going to be a great picture. We also need to have a purpose behind the picture. What's the message that we're trying to bring? And this is where sill let's come into play. So when it comes to sunsets, silhouettes could be a great subject. It could be a mountain rage or a person. Anything you like, depending on the mood you want to display. Um, and it could be, you know, behind the actual sunset. Or it could be directed at the sunset. So it really depends on you know, what type of message are you trying to bring out, um, for four. To the picture. Like when I see this picture, I get very like nostalgic Vives where it's like childhood, that child on the swing You know, um, reminds me of, like, really nice good old days, and it's more nostalgic now for this one. This gives a very nice, cool, moody type of effect and kind of gives me Ah, kind of gives me a really nice idea of, like how the animal is portrayed in the picture and you have, like, a little bit of the grass. Um, so it's giving this really nice, I guess. A little bit of a creepy cool, um, type of vibe now. So the silhouettes, they have a huge role in changing the whole outlook and interpretation of the picture, so they're agreed out onto the pictures. So if you want to capture a sense of, try to maybe consider a silhouette for once, you know, um, it's always great to have silhouettes. They can produce great results. You'll you love it, and it's great experimenting with them, too. 6. Exposure, and Basics of Photography: Now let's talk about camera settings. You guys know how I mentioned manual mode, and it's how it's important. So to get to manual mode, every as Lardy Esler is, it has this style, and you could just switch the dial to em. Um, and that's manual mode. So in manual mode, we can really change a lot of our camera settings. So shutter speed, aperture, ISO, etcetera we have essentially what we have is more control. And instead of relying completely on the auto mode, you know we can really control what part of the what part of the image or what part of the whole view we want to capture. Do we want to capture more of the golden tones, or do you want to capture more of the sun? You know, it's a lot we haven't are controlled. You wanna have longer shutter speeds. Um, do you want to make the water look still or running? You know, it's it's It's very it's very much correlated with how much control we have over what we want to put out in her image. So it's takes the practice. It definitely expect us. I'm still in the beginner stages so I still don't want master idiot. It's It is a little difficult, but I think once you get the hang of it, um, you won't forget it. So there are no specific settings on a camera for a sense of time. Um, there are, although tips Ah, there there's a bunch of tips you can get online or from YouTube. Um, but when it comes to camera settings in manual mode, once again, it's all about experimentation. You really don't know what you'll get until you try that. So ah, exposure aperture ISO shutter speed. Um, we're gonna talk a little bit about each how it effects our pictures. So let's move on. Okay, so let's talk about exposure. So, um, when you're trying to do different exposures, um, you want you want to kind of move to aperture or shutter priority mode? It's another mode on your camera. Now what this conduce is weaken really try to adjust our exposure so that we, um, capture, Let's say, ah, picture that is less like a silhouette and it and it gives you more of an idea of what's going on. So this one isn't a complete salute because you really get to see some of the details of the horses and the people on them, right? So it's not a silhouette, but it gives a very nice, soft type of effect to the picture because we've tried something that is a different exposure. So exposure has a huge effect, so exposure can really ah be affected by your aperture and shutter. So so when when looking at aperture and shutter speed, you really want to focus on exposure, how much lighting you want to show? Do you want to show more of the golden tones or do you want to make this guy look more white? Cause I know auto mode can be a little tricky because sometimes it doesn't get us what we want. Now, other tips are bracketing turning off autumn auto, white balance and auto exposure lock. So, um, bracketing is kind of like what your camera suggests. So what you do is you let the cameras adjust what it wants to suggest for that location or that specific moment you're trying to capture. And then you do something above that mark and then something below that mark. So you get to see kind of like a picture where it's like, this is what the cameras suggest. You go a little about that and then you go a little bit of that, you get, like, a variety of shots now, um, turning auto white balance off. So when you turn auto way balance off, you're actually gonna get more of the golden tone. So try a shooting more on cloudy or shady. Um, and turning off auto white balance is really helpful because we get a lot of the golden tones. That's that's You know what we want in a something said, because hence it is the sunset. It's yellow. Come on, it's golden, Um, and then auto exposure lock. So that's, you know, setting your camera to somewhere where it's darker and locking that exposure and then using it for, um, your own kind of the I guess, ah, scenery and capturing that scenery in that specific exposure. So that's something else you can dio Here is some nice Danny little waterfalls. You look very beautiful look, and one of them you can clearly see the water. It's like those little droplets you can even see them this more like in the middle. And then This is like the water is completely smooth. How do you get that has to do with charters being my friend. Look at that. Wow. How the flip do you get that? And how the flip do you get that all has to do with Feder Speed. So shorter speed is like, basically, when you in what time you expose your camera to the light. You know, there's more technical definitions. Um, but it has to do with your exposure. Right? Okay, so you know, if someone's running, this is 1 500 won over 500. So basically 1 5/100 of a second. I don't know. I don't know how to describe it. Basically, this one's really fast, and this one is really slow. Okay, so someone's running. And you told the camera take half a minute to capture this. So at night time, it's hard to see things. So this is where I so comes. It kind of adds like I s artificial light, basically artificial light to your camera, but it could make it look a little grainy. So you really want to be careful with what I saw you play with now with shutter speed it just has to do with. If I show you more technical definition, I think it would make sense more. Okay. Um so let's such up the definition. Okay, So the time for which a shoulder is open at a given setting, So basically has to do with the length of time when ah, when the digital or the film or digital sensor inside the camera is exposed to light. So when is it exposed to light? It's just, you know, they make a seem super complicated, but it's really not that complicated. So and then what you're looking at here is F 30 to a 16. Beretta, this is all aperture. Okay, so something is structure speed, this is shutter speed. Okay, Does this stuff It's shutter speed. So you're looking at Really, um, you know, do you? If you're if someone's running fast, do you want TEM to show as if, Like they're, like, not even existent, like they look like light? Or do you want them to be like something like still, you know what I mean? Like, this is an example. Like, it's still and then it's turning, turning, turning, turning. And then you see kind of, like, this color type of motion. So that's really what it has to do it. I'm really terrible with explaining these technical causes. I've I know I do need to practice with that, but this is a little bit of aperture. So it's like kind of like the opening of a camera, right, Um, and has to do with, Let's say, let me show you. So if I show you some examples aperture Okay, so these air different apertures has to do with depth of field and that the field is kind of like how blue your background is. It's literally help. Look, your background is okay. That's all that the field is so aperture examples. So you look at this. The backgrounds Very nice, Lillard, right? Or you look at ah, um year. This is a nice example. Okay, so this is a small aperture background is kind of distracting. This is a large aperture. It's four. Background is nicely blurred now. Ah, small aperture means basically it's higher numbers of this is F 22 and then a large aperture means it's lower in number. It's kind of confusing, right? It's like the opposite. So, um, this is for in the Balkans. Nice people, er so basically help alert your background. It's that's what aperture is. So when you're really capturing, let's say a silhouette and it's like a tree branch doing the sunset time you don't want to have the background is distracting unless you know you're going with a certain certain type of, I guess message with that, um, I would say, Have the background completely blurred, you know, like, Look at this wild like that that looks amazing or this, you know? So it's all about the field, but you won't blurred in the background. So that's also important to understand. So those are things we comfort. I s O exposure, aperture, shutter speed. And that's basically it, guys, that's that's all you need to know about all of those Does that stuff 7. Editing: is the most important tip of all time. Don't look directly at this on because that's like that's dangerous. You don't You don't want to be doing that. Okay, so so be careful, because especially when you're looking through a lens, that's even more dangerous. So when you're capturing this on directly, you really want to be careful. Don't Don't look directly at the sun. You can take a little peeks at it. But, you know, you don't want to be looking directly at the sun for a prolonged period of time that that can really affect your vision. So we're gonna take care of our eyes to, you know, um, editing. So, um, I know a lot of people really consider the, you know, when you're capturing the sunset, what you should do shutter speed and all that, but I feel like post production is very important. So editing. So what do you used to edit your pictures? So editing, um, I believe, has a huge role to play, especially in photography today, where it's like so much can literally be manipulated by using photo shop. So I used photo shopped at at my pictures. You can use light room, photo shop or let's go. Um, this goes great for, um, starters or beginners. Um, the editor is super easy to use its like, any app you would use. And it's And it honestly has really nice filters, though. You know, if you're just starting off, Visco can be great. I think to start up any of you want it, like, jump right into, like, the big the hard core stuff in, Yes, Photo shop in, like, room are probably the most popular. So, um, when it comes to light room, I don't have light room, but you can. There's a trick to open up like a little light room in Photoshopped. Um, and I'll show you how. Um, But before we go into that assure your time lobs of what I did to edit my photo, Um, so you know, it depends on what you're kind of looking for. Um, for me, I try to have us a renewed to the photo, and I think I really figure that out. Once I actually opened a photo shop, and I start editing. Ah, lot of times when I'm editing sunset photos. For me, what's important is color. So sometimes I'll try to bring up more of the cool colors, the purples and blues. And other times I try to bring up more of the warm colors like oranges and whatnot. Depends on whether I have silhouettes whether at water in the picture, you know, for me, reflections, especially water reflections are very beautiful. Um, And whenever I have them, I really try to up my contrast and I try to, you know, make the silhouette more, you know, I guess kind of, you know, more pronounced Biggest more emphasized in my picture because I really want the reflection in the water to be clear cut. And, um, I think reflections, especially water ones air Really magnificent, because whatever you see, a front is literally reflected right in the water. Um, and I think that's like super amazing. So I'm always, always, always, just so like Like I guess, um, in shock of sunsets and sunrises, because I feel like there's so much power they hold in lake, making us feel like we're so small, you know, you you see a sunset or sunrise and you feel like you're such a small person and you feel like you're this small being in this really huge world or in front of this huge scenery, Um, and almost makes you feel sort of irrelevant because you really start diverging your focus to this magnificent moment. And all of a sudden you feel like you don't really exist. It's just so magnificent. It's like a poetic moment. Come on, guys. Like like when I see a sunset on like, damn okay, like this stuff, this stuff is really This is legit. Okay, this is amazing. So, yes, editing is important. And here so now wash the time lapse. - And OK, so now we're back. And now I'm gonna show you how to open up that little light room in photo shop. So yeah, and this is it. Okay. Perfect. 8. Class Project: the sons of photography. We're talking about sunset. I want you to apply at least three techniques from this presentation from this class to your own sense of Victor and capture something amazing. And look, if you don't have an SLR or DSLR just captured with the phone camera, come on, start somewhere. Um, with photography, you just have to pick up the camera and just start. If you don't start, you're not gonna get anywhere. So it's important to start. So please just start and just captured. One sense it. It could look. It could look terrible. It's fine. All of her pictures when it first starts, they look terrible. They look disgusting. OK, it's fine. You know, that's how we learn. So it's OK. Whatever the picture looks like, it's completely fine. Just make it your own. Make it something you put your effort into. Okay, um and that's that's the main part. Keep practicing and have us have a wonderful day. You know, half have a great month. Have a great week. Well, whatever you're going through, hope it passes by. And I hope you get a great sense of pictures. Okay. House all day, everyone But I