The best time for your beach photo session

Couples romantic beach portrait photograph on Sand Key, Clearwater Beach in 'magic hour' sunset light

You may have heard of the “magic hour”, that special time right before sunset that photographers love so much. The light at that time is soft and warm and, because it’s not coming from directly overhead, it doesn’t cast harsh unflattering shadows on people. Instead it bathes them from the side in a lovely golden glow.

That magic hour is truly magical on the beach here in St. Pete, with the gorgeous Gulf Coast sunsets behind us. Unfortunately here in Florida we’re also extremely likely to be plagued with afternoon thunderstorms. Now that can be a very good thing – those looming dark clouds make for some gorgeous dramatic skies. But torrential downpours can also put a stop to any photoshoot.

Tim our beachcomber photographer is excellent at finding holes in the clouds to work in, and also at finding little nooks in the local scenery to shoot from when the weather’s not so hot. But did you know there’s another alternative you might not have considered; a way you can get “magic hour” light without afternoon thunderstorms? Because there are actually TWO “magic hours” in every day – just before sunset, and just after sunrise.

Those sunset photoshoot slots are also the most in demand, and thus they fill up quickly. So if you’d like to try avoiding the crowds of tourists on the beach and on the schedule, as well as avoiding potential thunderstorms, why not consider scheduling your photoshoot in the early morning instead of at sunset? You could have something like this as your backdrop…

glorious 'magic hour' St Petersburg sunrise photograph

Clift & Jim on Sunset Beach

We were privileged to be there when Clifton and Jim tied the knot in an intimate, breezy wedding ceremony on Sunset Beach, FL. The guys had said they especially loved Tim’s black & white work. (They’d somehow seen ‘Ennui’, his satirical student-film tribute to Jean-Luc Goddard, lol!) So we made sure to give them some gorgeous black & white photos along with their romantic Florida sunset silhouettes. We even set up a bit of special lighting to create this stunning couple’s portrait:

florida-beach-wedding-photography004

 

It’s possible to to create beautiful artistic images of your gay wedding, no matter how small, casual or non-traditional it might be.  When there’s this much love and joy filling the hearts of everyone present it’s a pleasure.

 

 

There were a few moments of alarm when we thought the power was out and there’s be no lights for the planned after-dark buffet reception. But photo assistant Ian stepped in and saved the day, finding the GFCI reset switch (probably blown by one of our regular Florida afternoon thunderstorms) that let our fairy lights glow.

 

sunset-beach-gay-wedding042

sunset-beach-gay-wedding006

 

It was a joyous occasion, with delicious Cuban food and great music, a beautiful sunset and balmy tropical breezes. And a charming couple who so deserve their happily ever after. Congratulations Jim & Clift!

sunset-beach-gay-wedding054