The Golden Hour

The Golden Hour is one of my favorite times of the day to create photographs.


So what is the big deal about the golden hour?

During the golden hour light is diffused and indirect. You’ll notice the shadows aren’t as intense as the rest of the day. But my favorite thing is the beautiful, warm color of the light.

There is another great benefit to the golden hour, especially important if you are just learning to shoot in manual mode. It is much easier to create a correct exposure. Why? The light has less contrast creating more even light for your camera to read.

Nice little side benefit isn’t it?

You can watch outside and see the golden hour arrive, but if you are like me, it’s easy to get caught up in life’s activities during the golden hour. It slips by rather quickly, so being ready is helpful. There are many tools to help you know the best time for light where you are.

A few resources to help you out:




Magic Hour app

Rick Sammon’s Photo Sundial (fabulous)

Golden Hour Calculator (Android)


Set a timer and step outside with your camera in hand to catch the beautiful light!


Do you love the golden hour? What do you do to remind yourself to step outside?


  1. Tammy Malone

    The golden hour calculator says that in my area in Texas, the golden hour is aprox 10:30 am. and 1 pm. That seems like pretty harsh lighting during those times? Is this correct? Just trying to figure all of this out 😉

    • Hi Tammy, it looks like the first link is no longer an accurate link unfortunately. The second link will most likely be more reliable.

  2. No equivalent for Android 🙁 I am seriously considering going back to iphone any day now even without the upgrade price. I miss iphone!

    But thanks for this. I am going to try it out.

  3. Just downloaded the app. I did take a photo yesterday during what I think was the magic hour.

  4. Thanks Katrina! I didn’t really “get” the website, but I’ve downloaded the free app! I had heard of the golden hour but never knew when it was. 🙂

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