I love a sunstar shot! They are ‘wow’ shots full of impact and it is surprisingly easy to take them on the Olympus Pen – here’s how…
Obviously you need to wait for the sun to go down. If you’re busy dashing around an app to tell you when the sunset is in your part of the world is super handy! Just make sure you have your Olympus Pen (or OMD!) to hand!
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I’d say the ‘golden light’ hour can be up to two hours before the sun goes down, at least that’s when the light starts to get absolutely gorgeous, throwing the most beautiful rich golden warmth onto anything in its path.
Now for settings – the main thing you want to do is to crank up your aperture (that’s your F-stop) on your camera as high as it will go. I shot this on the Olympus Pen E-PL9 which goes up to F22. The higher you go the more defined your sunstar. I took this on Aperture mode: with my ISO at 320 & shutter speed at 1/60 (as decided by the camera as I had these settings on Auto but you can set these yourself too) and overall exposure value at 0.3.
The best sun rays you will get will be when the sun is disappearing below the horizon or behind a wall or between branches (for example, it can be anything really! And you can then play around with angling the camera to get the best effect.
I was using my (now quite dented lol!) Olympus M.Zuiko 17mm f1.8 lens. As I’ve mentioned before I use this for 95% of my shots. Although on this particular trip as I was also shooting furniture setups I had an OMD E-M10 mark iii camera set up with the wider M.Zuiko Digital ED 2mm f2 lens. But more on that later!
Afterwards, transferring the photo straight to my phone via the Olympus Image Share App, I edited in VSCO, upping the clarity, contrast and sharpness, a tiny big of grain and bringing down the highlights. I’m quite addicted to my editing process so now I always open in Facetune and use the Details tool to bring out the… details (! – I just use my intuition on this and don’t go too heavy, more like light brushstrokes around the picture unless there’s any real obvious aspect I was to pull out) and then I go to Snapseed where I play with the Ambiance tool. It’s all fairly subtle and probably only really noticeable to me!
This photograph was taken on:
Remember you can use my discount code for 20% off – STYLO20 – at checkout on the olympus.co.uk site. Any questions let me know!
See my last How I Took… on self portraits here!