Using the Sun As A Compositional Element

For the most part, as photographers, we avoid shooting into the sun for fear that we’ll get some unsightly flaring.  The sun DOES present some exposure challenges, and of course, flare is a concern, but by carefully composing your shot, and properly exposing, including the sun in your images can create stunning results.

The first secret to using the sun is about positioning.  When you can, position the sun behind something else in your image. In the image of the photographer above, this gives the effect of a halo, helping create the silhouetted image.  By using exposure compensation to darken the exposure, I kept the sun from blowing out, and darkened the main subject into the silhouette. I then adjusted the white balance and color saturation to get the final result. Because the image was shot at f/2.8, the sun appeared as a giant ball in the image. In another example, the image of the daisies, a wide angle lens was used to make the sun smaller in the image, and was then positioned just behind the stem of the daisy. Because the image was shot at a smaller aperture, f/22, the sun appears as a star rather than a ball.  One of the cool things that happens when shooting into the sun with a wide angle lens at a small aperture is that the light falls off in the areas away from the sun, creating dramatic skies that go from near white by the sun, to deep blue in the corners.

via Using the Sun As A Compositional Element.


About edESTESdesign

Ed is an Architectural Design Management Consultant, as well as, a Graphic and Web Designer. Ed combines all of these services to form the firm Ed Estes Design which provides a wide variety of design and multimedia solutions for your business. View all posts by edESTESdesign

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