Let me start by saying that if you pick the right photographer who knows everything about outdoor light, you can take photos at any time of the year, during any season, at almost any location, at any time of the day, and you’re going to get beautiful photos. But because you love natural light photography as much as I do, there are two times of day that are the best times to take outdoor photos.
Some photographers get scared of sunlight. They’ll take their clients straight to the shade because that’s the easiest. The light is even and you don’t have to worry about hash shadows or harsh light. This is also why lots of photographers love overcast/cloudy weather. When it’s cloudy, there is even light everywhere! While taking photos in shade is the easiest, the most magical and best times to take photos outdoors is when the sun is lowest in the sky. This is immediately after sunrise, or leading up to sunset.
Since most couples don’t want to get up at the crack of dawn, taking photos in the hours leading up to sunset are the most magical times. The sunlight looks the most romantic as it wraps around the couples during their session. I always try and schedule outdoor engagement and portrait session about 1-2 hours before sunset (depending on the location). On wedding days I also schedule sunset photos in the timeline. This time usually falls either at the end of cocktail hour, or during the reception. Those are the perfect times to sneak away from the guests and spend 5-10 minutes alone with your new spouse in that warm sunset.
Here are some of my favorite photos that were taken in the hour leading up to sunset!
Check out this engagement session that ended with the most beautiful sunset portraits HERE!
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