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Meirion Harries

Shooting in the "magic hour"

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I wish to shoot in 'the hours between day and night early in the morning and late in the evening' (lifted from trivia on the IMDB profile of 'Days of Heaven' - which I have never seen btw).

 

I want to shoot from about 4-6am in the summer months (perhaps 9-10pm as well) to capture a feeling of a time between night and day. Any suggestions for film, camera settings etc?

Anybody shot at this time before?

 

I have a feeling it will be hard to shoot at this time but I'm willing to give anything a shot - and many times over!

 

Thanks!

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i've done it plenty of times. the light is beautiful and quite easy to capture, the only real problem is that the brightness of the sky changes dramatically every minute. you probably won't see the difference until it's on film so use your meter constantly. using nd's and working at a pretty constant aperture is probably a good idea.

 

where are you? while magic hour can last several hours here in sweden it's usually not even an hour long further south.

 

/matt

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I'm in the south-west(ish) area of the UK. We get some nice light from 4am onwards and from about 9-11pm in the summertime. Of course the longest day has already been (solstice) and the best 'light' where the sun has not risen but everything is visible is not really an 'hour' more or less half an hour if you were to be very specific about that 'effect'

'using nd's' - sorry to be ignorant what are nd's?

 

Thanks by the way

 

i've done it plenty of times. the light is beautiful and quite easy to capture, the only real problem is that the brightness of the sky changes dramatically every minute. you probably won't see the difference until it's on film so use your meter constantly. using nd's and working at a pretty constant aperture is probably a good idea.

 

where are you? while magic hour can last several hours here in sweden it's usually not even an hour long further south.

 

/matt

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Days Of Heaven is a beautiful film. I love seeing stuff that is shot in natural light.

My experience with magic hour light is mostly with shooting stills on film. You should expect a cool colour temp, ie slightly blue cast as you are pretty much shooting in open shade. Some people might use a gentle warm up filter to reduce this - it depends on the type of look you favour. Apart from that the light will be soft, flat, low contrast.

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