Sunsets and "golden hour" = boring and clicheed ?


At this time of year here in Tasmania we are often blessed with long, lingering twilights with gorgeous, golden and orange light and magnificent sunsets. How many sunset ( and sunrise) photos have you seen on social media such as Facebook and Instagram ? I've watched several videos of photography clichees to avoid, and one of the big ones is sunsets. And to be honest, although they are very nice to look at and we get some amazing coloured skies here, they can get, well, a bit boring to photograph, though they still have an irresistable pull.


I must say, I have taken an incredible number of twilight photos, with that gorgeous golden light or the crimson and darker blue hues that come out as the sun goes down below the horizon. But I realised I was taking the same kinds of photos again and again, and that's what most people do, you can find thousands of them on Instagram, many well shot and beautiful....but...well, they do get rather boring.


In many ways this highlights what at the end of the day is the most important thing in photography, in not just my opinion, but in the opinion of many photographers, and that is composition and point of view. Finding unique and creative compositions and points of view allows the viewer to see something they have seen a thousand times in a different way. It may add something unique of the photographer's point of view, after all, part of the art of photography is allowing the viewer to share something through the photographer's eyes and this can make a photo really pop or evoke an emotional response.


Knowing this, I now try to challenge myself to find something different in my twilight photography and try and steer clear of the obvious and predictable that I have already done hundreds of times ( and still do to be honest). Some times it's about playing with light, colour and contrast, sometimes it's about making choices about what to include in or exclude from the frame. Here are a few from a recent wander along the Bellerive foreshore...


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