It was a crew member from New York, here to shoot a commercial. While gazing at one of our ridiculous cloud displays he said, “I think this is the first time I’ve seen the sky touch the ground.” The aerial canvas is so gigantic because there is so little to get in the way.
I have witnessed incredible sunrises and sunsets over the years. The cushy gig is to work on a project that needs this shot. Scouting for a sunrise / sunset? Really? Yes.
When the sun is up, as equal in spectacular are the clouds. In the old days, we referred to them as ad agency clouds. Of course the client (and DPs) want them for the shoot day after you go ahead and shoot them on a scout. Apologies if you don’t get the same thing.
Why of course I have no control over which types of clouds will show up on your shoot day. But there is a better chance of seeing them when you have a sky like ours as to fill it with them. Yes, you can add them later if you don’t get any. You’ll just get the biggest blue screen you’ve ever worked with…
A few tips for you:
- If you don’t have a savvy Gaffer, learn how to read a compass or get an app that indicates the true path of the sun. Little-known fact to the untrained eye: the sun does move north and south throughout the year, affecting the path of it being more to the north or south. Yes, it still rises in the east and sets in the west. Shocking I had to say that but I have had this discussion with more than one city dweller.
- Allow extra time to be at your chosen location and be ready. Some of the best sunrise and sunset light is just before and after it happens.
- Take it all in. You will be standing at a moment in time that will not be repeated. Relish it.
Images and words COPYRIGHT © Jamie Vesay ASK for permission to use.