During our family vacation at Ocean Isle Beach last July, we made our traditional sunset visit to the local pier. I quickly noticed a different light characteristic than what I was used to. The light was noticeably cooler. Later I remembered this visit was a little later than usual, the sun had just set at the horizon.
As sunset approaches the kelvin temperature of light typically drops resulting in the “golden hour” light. But after sunset, the kelvin temperature rise back up, cooling things off. As in sunrise, this transition point offers a great range of color temperatures. Warm yellow and orange, sun touched tonality sits just above cooler magenta and purple tonality just out of reach of the sun’s rays.
Shooting at twilight required use of a much higher ISO, this series was shot between 2000 – 3200 ISO. Though my Nikon D750 does a nice job with higher ISO noise reduction, this series still required some noise and moire reduction processing. After applying an Ektachrome slide film emulation the remaining noise was seamlessly blended into the film grain structure.
Below, I included a 2015 photo of the same scene taken 20 minutes earlier in the day, just before sunset. It’s a great example of the lighting change from just before sunset, to just after – twilight time.
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