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Vacation Beach Portraits Bahamas

Best Time of Day to Take Portrait Photos in Natural Light

The Facts About " Good Lighting" and Shooting in The Bahamas

When booking a portrait session we are always asked, “what's the best time to take our photos?” A lot of people have heard that you should shoot at sunset, some have heard that a cloudy day is best. Our advice is to trust the photographer's experience in the location you want to shoot, here's why....


We are a 'natural light' photography company, which means we don't use flash equipment when shooting your vacation portraits. 


Your photographer is the one who has to shoot, and edit photos you are paying for, also that photographer knows and understand lighting. If you are traveling for your photos, then that photographer knows the location as well. They know where and when the light is good, what direction to place you for the best shots etc. What you may have heard or read on the internet, doesn't stand up to years of photography experience. 


What is golden hour?


Golden hour is a time of day when the sun is low in the sky. It happens twice a day, at sunrise and at sunset. Despite the name, it can last longer than an hour depending on where you are on the earth and what time of year it is. However the 'golden hour' lighting conditions may happen 45mins before posted sunset times. Times listed online are 'absolute sunrise/sunset' which means depending on your location, it may be dark by time stated. We advise following the local photographer guidance on this. 


Why is golden hour not ideal or the best time for colorful shots by the water?


Golden hour is a great time to make portraits with lots of lighting gear and equipment, but there are a few reasons why you are probably better off focusing on the time best suited for your shoot and location. Especially those who want bright colorful shot but the water and on the beach.   


  • Focus Light harder to obtain

  • Light changes quickly

  • The color can be too much

  • Images are more dull with warm (yellow) hue

  • Shoot direction as it relates to location may be negative (hotel, buildings etc. in background rather than beach etc) 



Why choose the recommended time that works for the location you are staying?  


Those times recommended by the photographer assures the best images for your session, bright colorful scenes, beach views etc. Remember a simple vacation portrait is much different from a professional model shoot with a whole crew and equipment on scene. 

Can't you just make it look that way after? 

Short answer is NO! A general rule in professional photography is, the better you shoot the natural image from the camera the better the image is to work with for editing. Photoshopping and photo manipulation are not included in the vacation portrait booking, these costs can run $20 - $100 per image as it takes time. 

Heat & Humidity 

Another assumption made by travelers to The Bahamas is to think that its "not so hot" during later sessions. This it not the case, during the summer months (May - August/September) late times with good lighting for photo sessions are extremely humid, temperatures identical to midday high sun time 97 - 100 degrees farenhiet. This is another reason our recommendations work out for your benefit. You will sweat, and in most cases this cannot be helped in editing. Please keep this in mind! We live here and shoot here daily all year around, and no amount of web searching, or input from others not living here in The Bahamas will replace our 20+ years of experience in our beautiful country. 

Note: Please don't compare travel to other destinations to The Bahamas, all location, lighting, best times are different based on location. 


Mornings & Recommended Times 

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Evening/Sunset Times 

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