The color of the light is the reason the period after sunrise and before sunset is called the Golden Hour . The low angle of the suns rays to the surface of the earth are dispersed by the atmosphere creating a brilliant golden glow .This effect is pleasing to everyone and landscape photographers are no exception . Look at any website dedicated to landscape photography and notice that many of the images are captured in this type of light .
However , a famous photographer once said , " the best light for taking photographs is available light " . This statement is worth considering because as photographers we just want to take pictures . The reality is that we don't walk around and see everything bathed in a golden glow all the time . Sometimes the light is diffuse and lacking direction .
This diffuse light occurs on those days when the sky is overcast and the suns rays appear to be shining through a large white umbrella . Coincidentally this is the best light to photograph waterfalls because the low contrast preserves detail in the water which is so easily lost in bright sunshine .
Other times the light may be reflected off of a colored surface such as the sky and this color will appear in the image . There are many lighting situations that can all be used to advantage . The landscape has so much to offer that may be revealed at anytime . The point is don't wait for the golden hour at the expense of missing other opportunities throughout the day . So much to see and never enough time .