My Favorite Spots for Sunset Photos
Time and time again I am hired for my sunset photography. It's really something I have made of name for myself in so I would say it's probably long overdue that I share my favorite places to catch a sunset for your engagement session or maybe even on your wedding day!
When it comes to catching dreamy sunset photos there is a good aspect that is timing, but a whole separate aspect that is God. You can only do so much to catch a dreamy sunset on your own when really the final say is the weather that day. You can't create that dreamy cloud cover yourself and you can't created the most beautiful pastels in the sky. You can plan to be in the right place at the right time and hire a photographer who knows how to capture sunsets in all their glory but apart from that you are really just hoping for the best. I know a lot of photographers have the capability to do sunset overlays in post production and while that's totally cool if it works for you and your photographer, it's not how I roll. I believe that capturing the weather as is helps take your photos from photographs to memories. When I showcase the day as it truly was, one look at your photos and it takes you back. This is why I personally never use any post production overlays for sunset or sun flares. But to each their own!
Before we get into locations here's some tips and tricks I use to ensure I catch the sunset in all its magic.
1) Check the sunset time for your exact location! This probably seems like a duh, but if you're climbing up some mountain or going up in some rolling hills you might miss it if you're not timing it properly. If the sun is going to potentially drop behind something taller than the horizon you could loose the best part of sunset to timing if you aren't prepared.
2) A good rule of thumb I use is always plan to meet your clients an hour and a half before the listed sunset time (I usually just check on the weather app on my phone). This allows you time to get where you need to be if there is any walk/hike involved and it allows you time to feel our which angles you prefer with the actual sunset that is happening that night. If it's a wedding and not a session just periodically checking on how its going down in regards to where you are is great for the hour leading up.
3) You sure as heck can't make your own clouds, but you can pack smoke bombs and add too if needed. Definitely make sure this is legal where you are going and to use them safely. I recommend using the special effects smoke bombs NEVER the firework style ones. The special effect ones don't put off fire the same way actual fireworks do and they are made to be used by creatives. Overall they are much safer and are made to put off smoke for a longer amount of time so you have more time to capture what you need too. I could honestly right a whole blog post on how to use these best but I'll leave it at, if your client wants the drama these will definitely add that extra oomf.
4) Patience is key! Usually right when I think I have captured what I need, the sunset gets better. A lot of my very best shots are as the sun was going down, like seconds before it was gone. If you are trying to achieve these photos on your wedding day, I always tell my clients all I need is 15 minutes of their time right as the sun is going down to really make magic happen.
Okay let's get to the good stuff!!! My favorite locations for a dreamy sunset.
The London House // Chicago, IL
Deer Park // Port Angeles, WA
Klondike Park // Augusta, MO
Cannon Beach // Cannon Beach, OR
Voice of America // Dungeness Spit Sequim, WA
Salt Creek // Port Angeles, WA
Garden of the God's // Herod, IL
Nuclear Waste Adventure Trail // Weldon Springs, MO
Titlow Beach // Tacoma, WA
Lago di Braies // The Dolomites, Northern Italy
Mt. Rainier // Mt. Ranier, WA
And lastly ANY rooftop with a sunset view!
Here is a roundup of some of my favorite sunset photos!!!