Back Modifications (1)
Views 42 Unique 23 Award Shortlist   

Sunset in Sedona, Arizona, USA

By SvetAriadne
A large drop of sun lingered on the horizon & then dripped over & was gone & the sky was brilliant over the spot where it had gone....
Twilight fell... & the sky turned to a light, dusky orange-golden yellow.....littered with tiny silver stars.....Smile

Tags: Landscape and travel

Enter ePz's Christmas Prize Draw! Plus, a prize for all on Xmas day!


dudler Plus
19 2.0k 1967 England
10 Jan 2015 1:34PM
There are two issues here, I think.

First, although I completely understand why you just had to shoot the sunset, it's lacking a real focal point. It's a bit like a stage before the play starts... I've done a crop which reduces the amount of relatively-peripheral space, but a tree or a figure would be perfect.

The second thing is that the technical quality is rather low. The trees (which have fine detail, and draw the eye) aren't sharp, and I can't understand why. The shutter speed was high enough to keep camera shake at bay, and the lens was stopped down a good bit. It shouldn't have needed a tripod, or anything else...

Were there any special circumstances that may have reduced the sharpness that you know about?

A beautiful moment.
pamelajean Plus
16 1.8k 2275 United Kingdom
10 Jan 2015 3:52PM
I am not surprised that you wanted to capture this sunset, Svetlana. The clouds have attractive formations and the golden light is warm and inviting.

You did right to wait for the sun to go over the horizon because there are usually exposure problems to contend with if you shoot whilst the sun is still full in the sky. However, I would suggest that you needed to wait just a little bit longer so that the sun's brightness on the horizon was less. It has caused red fringing along your horizon (chromatic aberration or blooming), which happens when you are shooting a subject against a bright sky, and is especially noticeable in high contrast situations.
When you get some fringing, try to stop down the aperture at least one stop and this will greatly help minimize the visible aberrations.

As John says, it's a good idea to look for something strong to put into your sunset foreground. You may think that the colour and clouds are enough for a good image, but everyone shoots sunsets, though not everyone produces a winner. A strong silhouetted subject makes all the difference. The great thing about silhouettes is that they add mood and context to a sunset or sunrise shot. Choose bold unfussy subjects that have an instantly recognisable shape because these work the best.
Foreground subjects make your image more interesting and it also appears more three-dimensional.

Time is always of the essence when shooting sunsets, and the best way to get a good composition is to firstly study your scene, even if it's during the day and you go back later, having decided where you're going to stand for a good composition, and where you have that essential foreground interest. Most people don't do that. While sometimes wonderful sunrise and sunset shots can be taken spontaneously without any forethought, itís often the case that the best ones come out of planning.

If you are going to include the sun, or at least the light of it over the horizon, try not to place it central in your frame, but offset it in your composition. Also do this with your chosen foreground silhouette.
Sometimes it's possible to hide the sun behind your subject, or to catch it while it's behind a cloud, so you don't have to wait for it to drop below the horizon.

You had your flash on, but it will have had no effect upon this scene.
Your ISO of 100 was a good choice because sunsets are usually bright enough for this setting.
Keep in mind that different exposures (aperture and shutter speeds) will produce a variety of different results so itís worth taking more than just a few shots, and experimenting. Your Exif Data doesn't say what exposure mode you used.
Underexposing a sunset scene will increase the saturation of the colours, and a lot of people feel that this is the most important tip for taking pictures of sunsets. You can simply try shooting in aperture priority and using some negative exposure compensation. In order to keep one step ahead of your camera, review each photo immediately after you take it, and if the image on your LCD monitor is brighter than the scene before you, use exposure compensation to decrease the exposure.
Your white balance was on Auto, and with this you run the risk of losing some of the warm golden tones of your sunset, so try setting your white balance to "Daylight" or "shade", as these settings are a good bet.

paulbroad Plus
15 131 1294 United Kingdom
10 Jan 2015 5:59PM
Good potential but the sun is very over bright. You needed rather less exposure to reduce the brightness and burn out. I also suspect your auto focus failed to lick on to anything giving the rather unsharp silhouettes.

Sunsets are a problem. They vary from very bright to very dull and can look superb to the eye, but often do not photograph well. It is often best to use a sunset as the background to an interesting silhouette.

11 Jan 2015 12:59AM
Thank you for your comments & suggestion....I appreciate them greatly ....Smile

Sign In

You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join For Free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.