I try to improve my planning skills for photo location visits. Of course this cannot be done for each and every location but it might provide some good results for a specific shooting in a single location.

So here’s the thing… I will go for lighthouse Westerheversand tomorrow. The weather forecast doesn’t look too bad so we’ll heading there later the day (no chance to go there for sunrise) trying to grab some sunset shots.

Two main views should be possible, one with the sun in the back to get some good light on the lighthouse itself but also an area shot having the sun behind the lighthouse.

The car has to be parked away from the location so it might be a good idea to take the Eckla trolley to transport the stuff to the final shooting location.

The first location should be to the north-west of the lighthouse. From Google Earth I grabbed the following view from there.

Using the Photographer’s Ephemeris I can see how the sun moving and what height it still has at this time of the year. Maybe this results in a slightly shift in time once seeing the real situation on site.

What lens might be usable could be worked out by calculating the scenery (the lighthouse is about 40 Meters high) and from obtaining the distance in TPE. Using Photo Transit with the specs (40 Meter height by 250 Meter away using Fx format will result in 125mm focal length to have the subject covering the sensor size (horizontal mode). So, adding some surrounds this might be a good chance for the 90mm Voigtländer or I will pick the Tamron 70-200 zoom for this one.

Second position with the sun from the front might work out later at around 2000h or 2100h CEST. Again, nice way to simulate this is using Google Earth as below shows.

Also the TPE location view for this spot shows the sun’s move through the scene.

As this location is closer but also – depending on the sky – there should be more surroundings on that picture, I might pick either the Voigtländer 58mm, the Zeiss 50mm or the Zeiss 35mm.

So, as said, this is to improve planning, therefore we will see what reality is.