Wake up early and see the sunrise!

Photo tip: Wake up early & see the sunrise!

As hard as it was to get up before sunrise while I was in the Dominican Republic on hire for a Destination Wedding, I am so very glad I did.

Early morning sun is soft, beautiful, yet dramatic. It is quiet, peaceful and very few people are around for sunrise, so you have your location all to yourself and your camera! It is a very relaxing and mindful way to practice your photography skills and creativity.

When you meter for your photo, take a reading off of your subject or the ground not off the sun. If you point toward the sun your camera will be fooled and your photo will not turn out as you had imagined. If you take a meter reading off your subject and put the sunrise in the photo you’ll have better luck in getting your subject exposed properly, but the sky / sun may still be over exposed in the background.

A couple of tips to get your subject and sky closer to the same level of brightness to bring out the best in your photographs …

Wait until the sun is behind clouds to make it more diffused and less contrasty.

Use a little bit of fill flash (if you know how) to brighten your subjects just slightly so that the sun in the background isn’t over exposed and blown out in your photo.

Choose the setting you think is correct, then bracket your exposure both over and under exposed and compare the difference on your computer when you get home. Then, next time you shoot at sunrise you’ll know better what to expect!

Dominican Republic Sunrise
Dominican Republic Sunrise

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