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Guilin blue hour photography with the cormorant fishermen is awesome. The blue light, mood and lamps reflecting on the Li River at twilight is magical. The blue hour is my favourite time for photography, beating even golden sunsets. It the best time to photograph Guilin’s cormorant fishermen with lamps, and offers a unique chance to recreate a beautiful bygone mood.

I seem to have a growing pull to a darker style of image, so expect more darker, stormy, and moody images in 2016.

The Blue Hour

The blue hour is a specific time during twilight when the sky turns a bluish hue. The blue hour occurs during two short time windows, before sunrise (Morning Blue Hour) and after sunset (Night Blue Hour) when the sun is below the horizon and indirect sunlight causes the sky to take on a predominantly blue tone. Meteorological departments calculate the blue hour by the angle of the sun.

I love the blue hour on Guilin’s Li River. Standing on a remote part of the river in the dark, no noise, no boats, no tourists cruise ships, just me and Mr Huang. Nearly all Chinese photographers packup as soon as the sun goes down, in the mean time I’m still here with my clients. The mood, moment and magical scene just hit you. In that moment you start to create images that make the viewer feel something. Images that convey a special moment in time, that somehow draw you in.

Blue Hour Photography

Camera’s Outperform Your Eyes in Low Light

During twilight our eyes are less sensitive to colour, but camera sensors always have the same sensitivity. That’s why photographs taken in low light appear to have more colour than what we recall. Your photographs during the blue hour will look bluer.

Guilin Photography During the Blue Hour

Morning Blue Hour



Evening Blue Hour



When is the Morning & Evening Blue Hour

If Sheldon Cooper were writing this article, or some techno photography blogs, he would want you to know precisely that the blue hour is….

Morning Blue Hour –  The geometric centre of the sun is between -6° elevation and -4°
Evening Blue Hour – The geometric centre of the sun is between -4° elevation and -6°

Since it depends on the day and your location it’s best way to find the blue hour with either of these useful mobile apps, Sun Seeker or Photo Pills.