Sunset shoots need … a sunset!

It’s said that a watched kettle never boils.  But now I’m wondering whether a watched sunset takes forever to appear?

Up in the hills behind Béziers last week, I was on a Photography shoot which included a Twilight Pool and Patio Shoot.  As you might expect, this part of the shoot needs the sun to, well … set!    Part of planning the shoot is knowing when sunset is going to happen at the location of the shoot.  No problem.  On this particular night it was going to be at 8:52pm.

lengthening shadows over the hillsides

Sitting waiting for sunset and enjoying the lengthening shadows over the hillsides

Beyond Sunset

8:52pm came and went and it was still bright.  Too bright for a dreamy, twighlight pool shoot for sure.  The kind that truly makes you want to dip your toes.

It’s OK, I wait.

The thing is, at this time of year (half way through May) a setting sun doesn’t necessarily bring that alluring twilight.  Instead, the sun takes a shallower dip below the horizon, and spreads its gentle glow for longer.   With the hills behind the property, the sun actually disappeared around 8.45pm.   Its soft and golden light created ever growing shadows which crept over the vines on their slopes.  Gorgeous, yes.  But not twilight.  I sit by the pool, breathing in the beauty, soaking up the tranquility.

The sun … sets

It’s 9.30pm and the sky starts to go a deep blue, the kind where you can see stars glinting through the remnants of the day’s light.  Perfect.

I switch on the pool lights and start shooting.  Beautiful.

A good night’s work.  Smiling on my journey home through the rolling hills, glancing across at towns on the plains below, their lights flickering with life.  Windows wound down with the subtle scents of spring turning in to summer.

This sunset was worth the wait.

Switch on the pool lights

Switch on the pool lights