I’ve been asked “When is the best time to shoot architecture?” The answer people are looking for is Sunset. Sunset, dusk or twilight is a magical time the images are romantic and sexy, but twilight occurs twice a day, once at night and once in the morning.

Shasta County Administration Building
Redding, CA
for Kitchell CEM
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Shooting at dawn we can get the same lighting balance as dusk creating the “welcome home” mood that is so appealing. I really like shooting at dawn because the air tends to be much less hazy. The smoke, smog and dust of the day has settled and the ambient light has a crisp feel and sharp edge to it.

Unfortunately dawn is remarkably early and often we need to either work through the night in preparation for the shot of arrive on the job site at 4:00 AM. Most people are less than enthusiastic about this, until I show them shots like this that cannot be created at any other time of the day. Then they change their minds.

There is one caveat to this. We can’t only shoot dawn or sunrise shots if the elevation we’re shooting is facing generally west. We need to be able to get the sunrise behind us to get this type of effect.