Red Sky Visibility Tutorial

Red Sky Visibility Parameter

This parameter indicates how probable the red clouds from the parameter “Red Sky” can be observed. The parameter “Red Sky” considers the clouds between 2km – 12km, which have a positive effect on a sky redness. The parameter “Red Sky Visibility” considers the clouds between 0km – 2km, which have a negative effect on the Afterglow.

The example photo shows a dawn, which takes place above the low clouds. Accordingly, a sky redness takes place, but it cannot be observed due to the Low Clouds. The Low Clouds take into account correspondingly disturbing clouds, such as high fog, which prevent the visibility of the sky redness.

This parameter must always be used together with the parameter “Red Sky”!

No, both parameters cannot be combined into a single parameter. 🙂

Template parameter

Like any parameter with a gray color overlay, this is a stencil parameter. Areas where the map is clearly visible have a high probability. Areas where the map is grayed out have a low probability.

Based on the visualization we use, the “Streets” and “Outdoor” background maps provide the best contrast to see the color overlay well. The background map can be changed at the top of the menu bar.

Weather Forecast App
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The scale can be used to translate how high the probability is. Simply compare the map with the scale and read off the value. Please remember: a probability of 20% means that you will come up empty in 4/5 cases!

The additional layer “fog” indicates if our fog algorithm found fog in the specified area. If so, the reduced visibility only affects valleys when they are fully filled with a dense fog layer. Small, local peaks can rise from within the fog and therefore be more elevated than the top layer of the fog. If so, the red sky can be seen from those peaks rising above the fog. 

If fog is indicated, check in addition our fog parameters and you may find a photo spot elevated over the fog layer. 

we forecast burning red clouds
Select forecast time

By scrolling the time scale you can change the date. An up arrow marks the sunrise, a down arrow the sunset on the respective date.

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Using the parameter

In the most visible areas of the map, the probability of occurrence of the weather phenomenon is particularly high. Pick out photo spots in these areas. The weather overlay covers the photo spots like a template. The more visible a marker is, the higher the probability that the weather phenomenon will occur at that particular photo spot.

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Weather specific photo spots

By setting the filter in “Views” to “Weather specific”, only those photo spots will be displayed that can be photographed with the selected weather phenomenon.

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Common things about weather forecast you should know!

Computer Simulation

The weather forecast in VIEWFINDR is a computer simulation that very realistically forecasts the coming weather. However, the forecast is not exactly the reality and there will be deviations.

In VIEWFINDR new weather data is provided every 3h. For example, if you check for the probability of afterglow after sunset in the morning hours, the forecast will change several times over day. This is perfectly normal and that’s a good thing!

The closer the deadline, i.e. the sunset in the evening, the smaller the deviation of the computer simulation from reality becomes. The forecast becomes more precise. Before you finally set out to take pictures, you should therefore take another look at the current forecast.

You should therefore check the forecast again before you start your photography tour to see, if the probability is still high. Don’t be mad if the forecast probability changed into worse, it probably saved you from a bad outcome!

The weather forecast in VIEWFINDR is limited to 24h for local weather models and 72h for continental weather models. It is not useful to look into the future for a longer period. The forecast becomes inaccurate and is not reliable. Weather apps that allow forecasts of more than 3 days but do not provide any indication that the forecast is extremely inaccurate are a disgrace. This gives the

Weather Data Resolution

Just as the resolution of your camera is limited, i.e. it cannot take an “infinitely” sharp photo, the resolution of the weather model is also limited. This is 2.8km for Central European weather data and 7km for European weather data.

Structures and features of the landscape that are not that large are averaged by the model. For example, if a mountain is 800m high, and the valley next to it is 400m high, then the landscape for the weather model in that “pixel” is 600m high, corresponding to the average altitude.

This means that small structures, like narrow mountain valleys or local small river valleys cannot be properly captured by the model. This is not a problem, you just have to learn to deal with it. If a valley in the mountains is much smaller than the resolution of our weather model, then you have to interpolate.

Small valleys always end in larger valleys. You can therefore use the weather in the next larger valley as a good reference for the weather in a smaller, adjacent valley. In the example, you can see that the large valley is filled with fog. It is almost certain that the small valley is also filled with fog.

Due to the limited resolution, it makes sense not to use too much zoom. It is important that you look at the overall context. Therefore, consider the weather forecast not only for your location, but at least for the entire region where you are shooting.

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This example show how the weather model sees the landscape. It is pixelated because of the limited resolution.

weather forecast for photo spots

Due to limited resolution, this layer of low clouds/fog will not indicate fog in valleys with a size below the resolution.