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Magic Blue Hour

Moments after the sun sets behind the horizon, the blue hour begins. Beautiful light. The pictures look very nice. But it escapes our eyes.

What a shame that so little is written about the blue hour. Well…  Let’s change that.  But first, let’s get motivated so we know what we’re talking about.

The “blue hour” is a phenomenon occurring just after sunset and actually lasts about 30 minutes. By the way and keep in mind that we can also exploit this blue light for shooting around 30 minutes before sunrise. The point is that the sun has sunk below the horizon, but it still illuminates the sky from which blue light is reflected on the landscape we are photographing.

There are no more shadows cast upon the landscape. The only light source is light reflected from the sky. So the sky, the clouds and their coloration are therefore a very important theme in these images.

The blue hour is also the perfect time for photographing the night city. The sky is a beautiful blue, and the streets are lit with warm yellow light emanating from street lamps, etc. Because these are contrasting colors, the resulting photos are very attractive.

If you photograph the night cityscape a little later, the sky turns black, empty and without details.

But let’s get back to landscapes. At some point, over a few minutes during the blue hour, the brightness of the sky and landscape are the same. This creates great photos without the need for filters or using HDR techniques.

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