Sunset photos

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Ed Mullikin, Aug 13, 2005.

  1. Ed Mullikin

    Ed Mullikin Guest

    We will be taking photos of a sunset over sand dunes in India shortly. I've
    done this before with white balance set on "auto" and I was not particularly
    pleased with the color. It was kind of bluish and lacked the "warmth" of
    the true scene. Once the sun starts down there is not much time to play
    with the settings. Any suggestions? Thanks.
    Ed Mullikin, Aug 13, 2005
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  2. Ed Mullikin

    wavelength Guest

    If your lens can accept filters or has an attatchment to do so.

    Graduated ND filter. (Darkens the sky and leave the land light)
    ND Stripe filter. (places a darkenes graduated ND strip over the sunlit
    horizon and sun)
    Warming filter. (nuff said)
    Warming Polarizer. (warms and polarizes light to reduce reflections
    from clouds in the shot. may not work the best on sunsets.)

    Add warmth in Photoshop or your favorite program.

    It would be helpful to know what kind of camera you have, so that
    someone with direct experience can give you tips on that camera.
    wavelength, Aug 13, 2005
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  3. Ed Mullikin

    Ed Mullikin Guest

    Thank you very much. The camera is a SonyDSC-F828.
    Ed Mullikin, Aug 13, 2005
  4. Ed Mullikin

    wavelength Guest


    You have a 58mm outer diameter lens. Tons fo filters out there to fit

    The best is the Cokin p series filter sets IMHO. Uses a standard 77mm
    square filter, but with ring adapters to attatch to virtually any lens,
    so you can use it on your next camera with the right adapter. also,
    with the ND filters, you can adjust the placement of the ND edge or
    stripe (generally in the ceter of the filter) for better ablity to
    frame your subjects.

    Also, if you shoot in RAW format and use the Sony Image Data Converter,
    you can select the white balance that looks best in post processing.
    RAW will provide the most lossless data also, but is of course larger
    in size. But for those fleeting sunset moments, I'd really suggest you
    use this if you're a stickler for quality and versatility in

    Hope that helps.
    wavelength, Aug 13, 2005
  5. There are some simpler ways.
    1) do not use auto white balance.
    Use sunlight white balance, or if you want warmer (redder),
    use cloud or shade white balance.

    2) A graduated ND filter can help a lot.

    3) watch your histogram and adjust accordingly.


    Roger N. Clark (change username to rnclark), Aug 14, 2005
  6. Ed Mullikin

    wavelength Guest

    wavelength, Aug 14, 2005
  7. Ed Mullikin

    Stacey Guest

    Yep, the auto WB tried to adjust the colors so they look like they are shot
    in nromal "white" light. Set the WB to daylight and you'll get what you're
    looking for. I leave mine set there for 90% of outdoor shooting for that
    Stacey, Aug 14, 2005
  8. Ed Mullikin

    Stacey Guest

    Stacey, Aug 14, 2005
  9. Ed Mullikin

    Marvin Guest

    Auto exposure lightens the pictures enough to wash out the colors. I get best results by
    making manual exposure settings, changing them as I go by seeing the image on the lcd
    screen. It doesn't take that long.

    I've also recovered the colors by adjusting the images in Paint Shop Pro. Auto exposure
    setting might work if you choose the option to reduce the aperture by a step or a
    half-step. I haven't tried that. You might also try auto bracket, starting a half step
    smaller aperture.
    Marvin, Aug 14, 2005
  10. Ed Mullikin

    BWL Guest

    If your camera can take RAW images, shooting RAW will allow you to choose
    any white balance setting after the fact.
    BWL, Aug 14, 2005
  11. Ed Mullikin

    Alfred Molon Guest

    I would just shoot RAW and forget about the camera internal WB choice.
    By the way, here are some sunset dune shot taken in India:

    Alfred Molon - Photos from China, Myanmar, Brunei,
    Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Nepal, Egypt, Germany, Austria,
    Prague, Budapest, Singapore and Portugal
    Alfred Molon, Aug 14, 2005
  12. Set your WB to Daylight. In Auto, the camera is reading all that excess
    red and orange light of the sunset and the durth of blue, and trying to
    "balance" it to some internal standard by adding more blue (or subtracting

    If you want even more "warmth," set WB to Cloudy. This is my
    "standard" daylight setting, since I live in the high desert Southwest US,
    where there is an excess of blue light. With color slide film, I normally
    use an 81A or B (depends on which make of film) to correct for the excess

    stefan patric, Aug 14, 2005
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