It’s just a simple fashion portrait with a dreamy feel — beautiful, no question, but how much post-processing could have possibly gone into the shot? You may be surprised.

The photograph was captured by El Salvador-based fashion photographer and 500px user Franco Roth with minimal gear (more on that later) in his backyard, and to show just how much work went into turning it into the final product embedded below, he put together this speed edit video:

When it was all said and done, the hours of editing took a backyard photograph and transformed it from what you see at the beginning of the video, into this:


People often think that all the images on 500px are taken using only the most expensive gear, and that’s just not the case. Franco didn’t even use a full-frame DSLR to capture Serenity.

In fact, if you were to purchase the exact gear he used — body, lens, and flash — it would cost you about $825. A brand-new Canon 60D will run you $700, the Yongnuo speedlight he used can be bought for $71, and the Yashica 50mm f/1.7 lens he told us he used ranges in price between ~$50 and $150 on eBay.

You don’t need great gear to take great portraits. Of course it doesn’t hurt, but honing your Photoshop skills can help close the gap between you and somebody who is using more expensive gear or can travel to more exotic locations.

And with that we will sign off, and leave you with some more of Franco’s work for inspiration: