Photo Tip Tuesday – Where Will the Sun Rise or Set?

Confession time – I’m a map nut. When I plan our summer trips, I can spend days on Google Earth. Then add sunrise, sunset, and moonrise charts and if we’ll be near water, tide charts. I don’t know what it is, but I can’t get enough of this stuff. Maybe I was a navigator in a previous life.


Imagine my child-on-Christmas-morning surprise and amazement when I stumbled across The Photographers Ephemeris! Ya, that’s what I said too – Ephemewhat?? As it turns out an ephemeris is a term used to refer to tables that give the positions of astronomical objects at given times.

Here’s how it works: First you enter your location, then you pick a date. The program will display a yellow line indicating where the sun will break the horizon, and an orange line where it will set. Also, the light blue line is where the moon will rise, and the dark blue line is where it is setting. Times for all these events are also listed.


In this example I’ve pin-pointed a spot on the beach and using line-of-sight to find the spot where I should be able to see the sunrise at the end of the pier.


Here’s the resulting photo, as well as other sunrise beach photos from this shoot. This is not only extremely useful for landscape photography, but also wedding and portrait photographers. Heck, everyone can use this, why wouldn’t they? I’m grinning right now, this is soooo cool. Post a comment and let me know if you too are amazed by this?

Photo Tip Tuesday ~ If you have a photo tip or would like to have a photo question answered, send me an email. Also be sure to subscribe for free to this blog to receive ongoing great photo tips and inspiration!