Golden Hour at San Biagio

Photographers talk about the golden hour, the hour after sunrise or before sunset, when the sun produces a warmer color.  These photos of San Biagio show the effect of sunlight at the golden hour.

San Biagio is a 16th century church outside Montepulciano, a hill town in Tuscany.  San Biagio is the tall structure on the right, with the the sun lighting the dome.  As the sun sets, the dome of the church is in the sunlight, while the body of the church is shaded by the hills. Covered with travertine, San Biagio has a tan color.

Montepulciano at sunset
Montepulciano at sunset

On another day, we drove to the church at sunset.  See golden hue of the walls.

img100-0905 img100-0907

A minute later, the sun was hidden by clouds. In the next photo, the church has lost its golden glow and is a tan color, because it’s now in shadow.   Only the exposure time changed across the photos.


As shown by the travertine of San Biagio, photos can take on a warmer color at the golden hour.  With a low sun angle, there is less reflected light; therefore, shadows are much more distinct than at mid-day.  Some reasons to take pictures at the golden hour.


Published by


I enjoy travel, art, food, photography, nature, California native plants, history, and yoga. I am a retired software engineer. The gravatar is a Nuttall's woodpecker that visited our backyard.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s