Shooting Into The Sun   14 comments

Joshua Tree National Park

You may have noticed from some of my images that I like shooting into the sun on occasion. I think it adds some drama to an image. It’s not tricky to get the exposure right, but on the off-chance that you’re wondering how I do it, this is how.

Rather than composing the scene and determining your exposure from the desired scene, I compose a similar image without the sun. With my camera set on full manual, I set my desired f-stop and aperture. In this case, I chose to slightly underexpose the scene to bring out the blue in the sky so I set the camera to 1/320th at f16. I chose f16 to give me the depth of focus throughout the scene. My ISO was set to 200 as I was shooting in both shadows and sunlight throughout the day – 200 gives me flexibility, especially when I’m not carrying around a tripod.

With my settings where I wanted them, I then recompose the image with the sun shining full into the lens. The sunlight isn’t a problem now though because my aperture and shutter speed are already set.

A little post-processing to add some fill-light to bring out some details in the shadows plus a little extra contrast and saturation to make the shadow details stand out and I’m done.


14 responses to “Shooting Into The Sun

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  1. Wow, what a shot! Incredible 🙂

  2. Such an amazing shot! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  3. Great explanation on how to do it. Sometimes the sun just adds some great drama to an image. Wonderfully done. 🙂

  4. Beautiful photos – and thank you for the follow.

  5. Perfect! Really like how the flare came out too.

  6. Great advice and image.

  7. Nicely executed.

  8. wow

  9. Great photo! Thanks for sharing the “how-to”.

  10. Hello Mike – thank you for stopping-by my blog and letting me know you were there…now I know you’re here and will be following. You have some incredible work.

  11. Beautiful shot with a great sunburst, Mike! I like the details of how you set it up too. Cheers!

  12. That lens flare looks like a waterfall, I’ve never seen anything quite like it! Thanks for the detailed walk-through.

  13. A great shot and thank for the ‘how-to’ — will give it a try some time.

  14. Wow, this is amazing! You got the sun without it overwhelming the photo – nice!!

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