Setting Clocks & Magic Hour

We’re setting our clocks forward one hour tonight. For many it means that this cold winter will soon be a memory.  But the extra hour of evening light is much more valuable to our humble team for a different reason: Magic Hour is earlier!

Magic Hour is the time of day when the sun is just above the horizon. It casts a warm light with natural diffusion for your outdoor shoots.  Also, there are hardly any shadows. You can achieve a warmer colour temperature for your subjects in camera with little post processing.

Springing forward with daylight saving means that this window of opportunity is earlier and will be open longer as the months pass. Magic Hour is within the first hour before sunset or after sunrise.  We challenge ourselves to make use of it more often.

It takes planning and skill to use the full potential of Magic Hour.  Rehearsals are key to getting your shots in mind well in advance of shooting.  You don’t want to waste time with unnecessary set up or risk extending your schedule by another day.

Terrence Malick (The New World, Tree of Life) often shoots his features during this time period.  Here’s a trailer for Days of Heavenwhere Magic Hour was used almost exclusively.

For more insight into our process, read more of our humble thoughts on this and other topics.