Photo Edits: Before and After 2

In this installment of Photo Edits: Before and After, we’re looking at a another photo taken on the beach in San Pedro, Belize to see how careful edits can dramatically change the image.

edits 2-3

So here is the original image:

edits 2-1And here is the edited version:

edits 2-2

The first step was to straighten the image.  I’m not sure which one of us actually took this image but whoever it was had obviously had a few too many at the bar.

Next, I cropped the photo to get rid of distractions.  I don’t care about the dock on the left.  I’m interested in the girl and the sunset.

Then we start fixing the colors.  Sometimes your camera sees a different image than you do.  I remember this being a gloriously warm evening rather than the cold one the first image expresses so we warmed it up a bit.  I did this by adjusting the white balance to make it warmer and then by increasing the saturation of the oranges to create  a more dramatic sunset.

Finally, I added in a bit of contrast and sharpened the image since I feel like most raw shots need this step.

What do you think?  Did I create a good photo out of a pretty average one or did I let my artistic interpretation go too far and make something that wasn’t real?

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