Rosco Plusgreen: The Magic Sunset Filter

Druids may get all festive around Winter Solstice, but you can bet your typical cubicle worker is equally pissed off. That's because most of them arrive at work barely after sunrise, and don't leave until after dark.

For that same reason, it is also when architectural photographers are most willing to go out and freeze their nu brave the cold weather to make skyline shots. At least in the northern hemisphere.

Buildings with their lights all aglow at mix light are much prettier than they are at mix during other seasons. In June (at 39 degrees north, where Baltimore is) you'd have to wait until 9:30pm to get this shot. And the buildings are mostly empty and dark by then.

Mix light is wonderfully unpredictable when it comes to the color of the ambient. And on top of that variable, here's a little tip courtesy the architectural photographers: When you shoot dusk skylines, try a few with your camera set to the FL white balance as in the example above. (Click the pic for a bigger version.)


Because it does two things. First, it cleans up the indoor fluorescent lights in your photos, taking out a lot of the grody green cast. And second, it adds about 30CC of magenta to whatever your post-sunset ambient light is doing. Even though I shoot in raw, I always shoot it in daylight, tungsten and FL balance just to get a feel for which one I might like the best while still on the scene.

Okay fine, Building Boy. What's all this this got to do with lighting?

A lot, actually ... Read more »


Post a Comment