Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Picture of the Day : The Winter Sunset

A Winter Sunset from Kelowna, BC Canada from the shore of Lake Okanagan by Chris Gardiner Photography www.cgardiner.ca
Scenic Sunset on Lake Okanagan
The anatomy of the winter sunset is different from the average Kelowna summer sunset for a few reasons.  None of this is proven, or science based, simply observational through experience.  I actually love the winter sunset way more than the summer sunset here, aside from the difficult to deal with temperatures, the winter sunset is more reliable. 

Read on for what I think, 

1. Kelowna is in a very arid climate, we don't get much precipitation in the summer, and with that - not many clouds either. Clouds are what makes sunset pop.  Winter on the other hand we are almost always under cloud cover.  Although clouds can block your view of sunset entirely, they are also crucial to having an excellent one.

2. To shoot sunset in the summer sometimes means being out at 10pm for the nice colour, in the winter, with the dramatically shorter daylight hours, you can be shooting sunset at about 3:45pm, like the ones above, caught at quarter to four at the end of November.

3. If you have shorter daylight hours, it means the path the sun takes across the horizon has changed. In the summer it may go up high in the sky around noon, whereas in the winter at noon, the sun is topping out at maybe 45 degrees above the horizon at noon. That is just an estimate, but follow me here;
if the angle of incidence which the path of the sun hits the horizon is shallower it spends more time in the 'zone' which produces beautiful colours through the sky. So although a winter sunset may come earlier, my estimation is that it lasts longer - you'll probably get more photos from it.

4. Less people make it out for winter scenics, so you'll be competing for scenic real estate with less photographers when you're at the money locations - that is if there is anyone at all.


A Winter Sunset from Kelowna, BC Canada from the shore of Lake Okanagan by Chris Gardiner Photography www.cgardiner.ca
Scenic Sunset on Lake Okanagan
So we are coming up on December 21st. Meaning very shortly our days will start getting longer again, and the sunset will happen later.  Here's hoping for a bunch more great sunsets this winter, feel free to share yours on my Facebook page! Hit the link below.


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