Recently, I had a sweet mom of a senior ask why I limit my session timeframes to the morning and the evening – right after the sun rises, or before it sets. I love this question, because I can see how it might seem counter intuitive to schedule a session during the not-so-bright times of the day – but there is a great reason for doing so!
When taking photos outside, the sun is the main light source. When the sun is rising and setting, it’s at it’s lowest point in the sky (hang with me here!). In the middle of the day, the sun is at it’s highest in the sky – typically, right overhead, which is known as the toughest time to take photos. But why?
When the sun is right overhead, the light is very harsh. The light often creates big, shadowy circles under the eyes (which is very unflattering) and is harder to control because it’s just so bright! But in the morning and evening – the sun is lower, and the light is softer, which makes it easier to control the light and eliminates the dark shadowy circles that will often appear under the eyes in bright light! In addition to being lower and easier to manage, the light typically has a warmer temperature to it, which flatters the skin!
However – there is an exception to this rule. On a cloudy day, the sun is still the main light source, but the clouds act as a diffuser, diffusing the light to make it soft, manageable, and more flattering to facial features.
So what it comes down to is this: scheduling my sessions in the morning and late afternoon/evening makes it easier to manage my main light source (the sun) and flatters my clients (no dark circles and warmer light).