Last weekend I was at the U.S. Capitol looking to get some decent shots as the sun began to set. My goal was catch a shot of the Capitol (from the east front) with a lit up sky behind it. It was a cloudy day that was breaking; the kind of day that often produces something dramatic at sunset. I got to the Capitol and found my spots, but was disappointed to find that clouds had gathered blocking the sunset and what I thought would be potential color.
I left the east front somewhat disappointed with the shots I had taken. Nothing post worthy. I headed to the west front to figure out what to do with the rest of the evening. I was sitting along the reflecting pool by the Capitol facing the building. There was a fair number of tourits due to the comfortable weather and long (Columbus Day) weekend. When I turned around, I was greeted by what I was waiting for:
The light of the golden hour lit the sky. The sun had already set below the clouded horizon, but after a few minutes the sun spread its color over the western side of Washington, DC.
So to get to the photography tip, don’t give up on light. Wait for the light. It’s called the golden hour for a reason. Not because it’s always an hour, but because the time that the sky lights up varies from day to day.