Tips for photos that aren't at golden hour
Summer is coming and along with beautiful greens and warm weather come late, late sunsets. I shoot almost exclusively during golden hour but every year I hear the same worried complaint from my clients-- What if my baby goes to bed at 7??? As picky as I am about lighting, I totally understand the dilemma-- no session is going to go smoothly with a cranky, overtired baby. So I have managed to push up a few sessions to well before golden hour and sunset to accommodate the baby's schedule. We can absolutely make it work if families follow a couple of stipulations to make sure they turn out well!
Location is everything with these sessions. I shoot during golden hour because the sun gets low and soft and golden-- any earlier in the day and it looks really brash and crates harsh shadows. So with that in mind, heavily shaded spots can look good earlier in the day since we can avoid the harsh sun a bit. If sessions are in an open meadow or at the beach, for example, there is nothing to block the sun and the light turns out much too harsh. I have a few spots in the Houston area that fit the bill-- just ask about them if you want an earlier session!
Styling is even more important during daytime sessions. With harsher sun comes more contrast and color casts. Families should be especially mindful to wear light, muted or neutral colors because we won't have the soft light and golden tones to pull it all together. Colors are fine, but they need to be subtle and not too dark. I also adjust the colors in my edits quite a bit to try to tone down the neon yellows, so anything with yellow tones in it is going to look very different on the final images.