Photo Stories

The Story Behind the Photo: Valentine’s Day Sunrise on the Beach

The Photo Story

On our last day at Punta Cana, I was walking the beach on Valentine's Day just before sunrise.  As I rounded a bend on the beach I saw this couple taking in the sunrise from a point on the beach. 

Valentines Day Sunrise on the Beach

As I approached the couple and said good morning, I noticed that she was drawing a heart on the beach with their names inside the heart.  What a great way to start Valentine's Day.

The photo was taken handheld, stooping down in order to get a low angle of the beach and tide.  The 5-axis image stabilization built in the Olympus OM-D E-M1 helped to get a sharp photo in the low light just before sunrise.


Camera:  Olympus OM-D E-M1
Lens: Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 lens
Focal Length:  21mm
ISO:  500
Aperture:   f/8.0
Shutter Speed: 1/125 second
Exposure Compensation: -.3
Lighting:  Partly cloudy morning just at sunrise

Post Processing

  • Cropped the photo and straightened the horizon in Lightroom 5
  • Used Google Viveza 2 to slightly increase the saturation in some areas and selectively brighten the clouds
  • Cleaned up the beach and sky using the Healing Brush Tool in Photoshop CC
  • Used Topaz DeNoise and a Layer Mask in Photoshop CC to selectively remove the noise from the sky
  • Selectively sharpened the image using the Unsharp Filter and a layer mask in Photoshop CC

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Mahabalipuram, India a Great Stop for Photographers and Tourists
My First International Photo Trip with the Olympus OM-D Camera

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