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Developing an image • Photography related workflows, conditions and thoughts
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  • haha, good post, keep em coming

  • haha, good post, keep em coming

    @MRfanny every time I read that sentence (in general) I can't help to visualise overfed, featherless and scared chicks massively running away from a huge dark, smelly factory-farm =)

    Anyways, today will be short. I would like to emphasize the importance of choosing/stabilising/creating a colour palette for your photographs. With the intent of getting pompous, redundant and preachy, I'll say that is a second subject, an unveiled story, a visual harmoniser (or trigger) adding and aiding the purpose of the work. Sounds pretty smuchy ok.

    The colour might be there, almost always are, even if one does not consciously notice or aim for them, they're already grabbing our attention. Normally I'll let myself be "trigger" by the whole (subject, light, context, etc. etc.), then frame and most of the times is immediately after framing that I would start noticing more subtle details, hues, stains and dead flies.

    I used to be more concern about the precision of the framing, nowadays I prefer to give other "subtleties" a chance; so I went a bit wider and more relaxed. Then the magic starts in the darkroom... well the shiny screen.

    I develop 95% of my stills in Lightroom; why? 'Cause it's just a base, a kind of "neutral" 1st grade that will suffer further tweaking. I found that LR's camera settings will most of the times be best colour complement to WB. I force myself to leave contrast flat as I prefer to apply an analog film response curve emulation (many times my own recipes) afterwards. Very seldom I apply sharpening after this 1st export. Like in a grade, tweaking the colours will also give you more contrast and enhanced separation/sharpening/structure.

    All of this mambojambo is very subjective and it has to be, because each person has a unique way of rendering; to the inside and to the outside, je je. Personaly, it's a big priority to understand (and it has not to be a rational process) what kind of "ambience" I'm after... there's a lot of playing around though.

    Now three examples

    In this one (a collage) I imagined a weird Institute's (hospital, mental facility, quantum mechanics food fusion lab) open space - - so pale brown sugar, yellowish HL and pastel plastic greens and turquoise cyans came out. I didn't aim for horror so I massage the deep reds to a watermelon burdeos :P

    Here I just fell in love with acid green, celeste and pinkish trio; which the green splash of the foreground leaves and the deep jade of the fingernails complement well. If I don't recall badly, I also went with a mix of cross processing, film curve and cross balance + my own tweaking of Fuji Superia 1600 grain & curve. I still have to understand what the fuck is that thing in her hand!!!

    A portrait of great percussionist, kinetic artist and friend, Paulinho. Joint in one hand, glass of wine in the other, the belly full, he's happy and so was I. In this photograph I liked how the green aurea background showed up above his head and the brown cane on the sides of the window and a more pale (serene) version on the BG wall; that and the yellow ribbon of his sweatshirt I tweaked and cranked a bit saturation. I think I used Kodak portra... or was it ektachrome curve? And a bit of glamour glow =)

    This one doesn't need much explaining. The blue sofa, the blue construction wall, the guy in blue, balconies of BG building in pale blue, the sky with blueish shades of grey, a metro fingernail in red and some stripes and splashes of yellow. Desaturated in general 'cause the vision didn't convey much happiness or joy. I want to remember that this one was developed in Capture One, I wanted very precise control on colours.

    So, that's it; here are some other examples posted in these forums (1, 2 and 3),
    I wish I had more time or better examples but life's is what we have at hand =)

    Almost forgot THIS

  • Hi there PV's folks =)
    Todays' BS versa sobre Possible mostly free 32bits photo developing OSX workflow
    Though most tools have linux and win version too =)


    Things you'll need:

    Raw Photo Processor (OSX only)

    Darktable (linux, OSX, win)

    XnConvert  (linux, OSX, win)


    So let's start with the SOOC jpeg, I shot raw and extracted the embed jpeg below. You can clearly see a kind of darkish-amalgamation-with-uttermost-implausible-future-whatsoever-matter; mr. histogram confers =)


    I always get amazed by Ufraw, RPP, darktable, Rawtherapee, LightZone's, etc. (all free) colour engine (mostly based in Dave Coffin's dcraw) and how much they manage to extract from the raw, specially side to side with the big boys. For further reading this very interesting Review of Raw Processors by Nine Degrees Below. And also below's a comparison between RPP and Lightroom. See that RPP got so much image that one can see the lens' hood, crazy!!


    RPP it is not complicated, we could even say it's fairly simple. After some tweaking and tinkering with its controls, one should get comfortable and satisfied (oh no, you're sinning big time brother, you cannot be satisfied!!!) with a set of chosen settings. In my case I experimented with 32bit ProPhoto Tif export. BTW I checked the Optimize image for post processing drop down menu, not that disregarding it would ruin your output, but once Andrey Tverdokhleb (developer of RPP) has created that option, might as well use it, wouldn't you say?


    With the tif under my armpit, poor tif, we went into a stroll to chopotop, I mean photoshop. If you want to edit 32bit image there are not sooooo many options out there. There are some drawing/vector programs that can handle it, I tried a couple, there's also Pixelmator. Darktable is an amazing cataloguer and non-destructive image processing platform, it can also export 32bit tif and EXR. Though I have covered it before in this thread, I really like its set of tools and specially fond of their beziers and the possibility of blending every single setting within (I normally use average one) anyway I've used PS for more than 13 years and it's not that I feel like cheating, it's just less hassle (see Fincher's Gone Girl).

    So below and just with demonstrative (o demonios tratados en castellano) purposes I applied a couple very simple layers: levels and kodak 5218 - 2353 LUT. When going from 32  to 16 bits one can further tweak the image or make a pause for a nice glass of Douro wine.


    Denoised, vigneted, perfumed and completely desaturated, I end up with the pic at the bottom. Still I haven't decided if and where to crop it, just left some possible marks. That's how lovely Diana checks her email, on autumn rainy Tuesdays while the men are working inside the house =)

    XnConvert is a fantastic batch image processor, easy, yet complete and accurate. Very important also free :P I use either good professor  S. Sverdlov’s C3C algorithm (handles grain better) - @Vitaly's good advising - or XnConvert (lanczos) to downscale my images, to change colour space and to other daily tasks. Effects and properties are easily stackable and there's a myriad output formats and options for the geeky users =)


    I also used ImageOptim to further compress the jpegs/pngs for the web and SetExifData by Marc Vos, both free. If you're using any of the before mentioned apps for commercial work, please donate to their developers, chen kiú

    Finally seize the opportunity and fill up your vehicle's gas tank (it might be your last trip, juo jua juahh) • gashô


  • some inspirational photos while digging the Boooooom
    Jenny Hueston

    Fred Huening

    Samuel Bradley

    Cedric Dubus

    Lucas Folglia

    Jason Domogalla

    Zaria Forman

    Iris Humm

    Puzzleman Leung,

    Max D’orsogna

    Mustafah Abdulaziz

    Elias Carlson

    Kari Medig
    Juan Aballe

    Christophe Negrel

    Carlos Jaramillo

    Danila Tkachenko

    Gábor Arion

    Harlan Erskine

    Holly Lynton

    Nika States

    Dale Rothenberg

    Olivia Bee

    Rickard Aall

    Nicholas Hawker

    BTW, petapixel had today a very interesting article - should go on aesthetic ethics but here will also do =)
    This one is interesting reading too
    Despite the publicity move, this one's "rescues" some nice pictures and whys

    The techy video

    An a heads up, the Affinity app is every bit as good as PS but faster, still beta and FREE

  • This year World Press Photo competition is nothing but a big fiasco - 20% of finalist images disqualified and one of the winners being accused by the portrayed city itself {with some important arguments} of staging his photo essay - which is something it was bound to happen.

    First of all the idea of making an exhibition with photojournalism material is... "indelicate". Despite I only have attended to 1 WPP exhibition and was because at the time I was working at the host museum and of course curious, it was immediately clear to me that hanging a huge print of a tutsi man with his head deformed {by a machete stroke or something} and all stitched up in "the temple of most elevated craft done by humans" - museums are yet another story for a better occasion - was something rather contradictory and literal that I would want to avoid in the future.

    I'm all for improvisation, instinct and guts... but sometimes it seems that there's a lack of thought and analysis for more delicate matter. Example; when I started with photography everybody reverenced Sabastião Salgado. Then I saw the pictures and thought to myself "these guy is a technical monster"... it took me some time before I understood that despite all the plethora of aesthetics and rhetoric bullshit there was something brutally cynical underneath the immense skills and wonderful technique; he was earning money, getting famous and respected for anesthetizing people's misery.
    I hope nobody confuses here the work I'm talking about, it is not photojournalism - for which I have a big respect - it is documenting the alienation of fellow humans and elevating that to art. There's no denouncing, not a true care, the emphasis lays on capturing the moving scene and make it breathtakingly gorgeous.

    Anyway I don't know what S.S. is doing these days and if he ever understood, acknowledged and/or made anything to heal his liability and socio-cultural footprint still present in hollow prizes and "philosophies" as the one hold by WPP. Honestly I also stop caring about him and channeled my energy to understand by my own means the emphatic way we see ourselves, we understand and care for each other; and finally how to express and relate that to a code, a language.

    One of sources -

    Ahhh, I had to let this out of my system, ufff.


    Onone is offering perfect effex 9 for FREE - here

    Finally and despite MikeLinn has already post it, I think this 2 part tutorial is rather watchable and Z Arias acts as and probably he's a cool guy. Enjoy it or at least enjoy Page's incredible exercise on... holding her own hands :P



  • What's UP guys?!! =)
    Monsieur Kiselev (kiss eleva, kisses that makes U float) :P

    JA ja ja I look at all the shit I've been posting here... and reminds me of a magazine... one of those that hurt when ass whipping. Anyway, more chaotic, misc stuff as usual, let's get to it:
    LR customizable
    Jeffrey Friedl is quite known by his plugins. But is his LR Configuration Manager that I'm focusing here. Basically is a FREE ONLINE tool for tweaking LR's appearance; for instance changing text type, size or panel's, maximum width, etc. Very useful. It's super easy to implement - believe me - and not harming your app in any way whatsoever. Just select the parameters you want to change, save TranslatedStrings.txt and put it in the "/Applications/Adobe" folder. Voila!
    A couple grabs

    Removing Halos
    Recently I had an image (non HDR) that after processing got nasty halos, this TUTO by Klaus Herman was helpful

    Darktable 1.6.6 it's been out for a while, Lightzone RC 4.1 also; however I must confess I've given up on the later, despite its powerful tools, the workflow isn't... for me.

    Towards Self-Powered Cameras // papper (PDF) -- HERE

    • Curio, R3 MONOBATH DEVELOPER, develop, stop, and fix black-and-white photographic film with a single bath!!

    and a cat, we "have" always have to squeeze a cat

    High velocity sorts need bazookas, maybe
    Now this is commitment!!. Despite Jim Winters doesn't know how to crop a photo, his work (planes, motorboats, car races, etc.) is solid, check it out -

    • Can I borrow a TM from anyone to go meet my gradma?
    Christina in 1913, Mervyn O’Gorman's Autochromes

    There's something magic about imaginary using physical interactive entropic processes...

    • Forensic photography


    • Very INTERESTING PROJECT // Too Hard to Keep by Jason Lazarus
    Too Hard to Keep) is a growing archive of photos the public deems ‘too painful to live with any longer.’ This repository is a place for photographs, photo-objects, and digital files to exist without being destroyed. Site-specific installations continue to be curated out of the expanding collection.

    T.H.T.K. Blog

    • Finally some fucking serious colour still work (IMO) by Alec Dawson

    Nobody Claps Anymore

    Well that's it for this batch brothers. Just one more link for the healthier pockets

  • @maxr Is that really your grandmother in those beautiful "1913" photos in your last post? Also, whats the story with the swollen guy in the hospital?

  • @joethepro

    Also, whats the story with the swollen guy in the hospital?

    The pic comes from Lazarus' project, Too Hard to Keep - it is linked to the blog. Anonymous send him photos or objects that are unbearable... it is a "public" collection of very personal memories that people prefer not to remember/keep.
    Despite I didn't find any cat, there are lot of dogs, no disrespect.


    Is that really your grandmother in those beautiful "1913" photos

    I wish, my grandma was a cold knife thrower who lived amongst gypsies. They look very alike though ,-)
    Christina was the daughther of a british electrical and aircraft engineer, Mervyn O'Gorman.
    The featured beach images are from Lulworth Cove, Dorset.
    If you want to know a bit more about the photographer -

    If you want to read a bit more about Autochrome Lumière -

    Grupo 7 really accurate and solid thriller, La Isla Mínima and El Niño... that's the sauce where I come from =)


    BTW attached is a zip with this last photo's 12 hue palette converted into an Adobe Color Swatch .aco file



    What up PV's?
    Latest google's compression algo Guetzli made headlines on all important tech sites. Other open-source advancements hardly ever are brought to the general public's attention. I'm not here to judge, but rather to share my view on the subject matter and some "better" alternatives. I've been using ImageOptim and jpegoptim (CLI) for quite some time, I've tested JpegMini, TinyPNG and Guetzli.

    IMO there's no point in bloating a thread with images that are quite difficult to differentiate at 1:1
    So I'll skip directly to the cheese. The best possible quality/compression ratio I'd managed so far was downscaling in PS with Sverlov's (free) c3c - thanks @Vitaliy - set to micro-contrast and sharpness 0 or 1 and live with its small gamma shift. Then exporting with tinyPNG within jpeg flavour. Smallest possible files. Now, not always want I go to the serious pro room {fart}, so we shall find an all FOSS alternative =)

    So I bit the bait and went on trying Guetzli... and it's painfully slow, unusable almost, we're talking 50 to 100 times slower than say mozjpeg or jpegoptim. Guetzli's still in diapers and parallel processing is possible but only for different inputs, so forget it for now. The good thing that came out of it is that now I've changed to Mozjpeg which is better than jpegoptim, fast and to be honest 99% the quality of google's within even smaller file sizes.

    From some time now, outside of photoshop I've been using Imagemagick to rescale the images. The documentation on IM's scale options is overwhelming, I've tried some of the output options and finally was happy with the standard.
    Downscale with IM and compress with mozjpeg gives me a ridiculously smaller file and an IQ almost identical to c3c+tiny WF.

    For me it's not practical to batch these ops from the CL, so I've created watched folders that apply the settings - plus sometimes EXIF strip, tag, rename and so on - to dropped files. You can opt to simply use a bash, a service, create a droplet from automator, etc. possibilities are endless =)

    The GOOD stuff

    This (wrapped in a bash) for ImageMagick, 1200 pix:
    convert "$f" -resize 1200 "${f%.*}_1200.jpg"

    This - compression 84 - (wrapped too) is what I mostly use for mozjpeg,
    but you can get away with much much smaller files:

    cjpeg -quality 84 -dct float -dc-scan-opt 2 "$f" > "${f%.*}_web.jpg"

    JpegOptim I used with:
    jpegoptim -f -m84 -b -P -v --strip-all --all-progressive "$f"

    Guetzli tried both with normal
    guetzli --quality 84 input output

    and multi-threaded
    parallel 'guetzli --quality 84 {} {.}.jpg' ::: input

    Wrapping up. Contrary to what everybody and their dog say, I never sharpen images after downscale, instead I use algos that retain the perceived original sharpness adapted to a smaller size. Using imagemagick for downscale and mozjpeg to compress the output render tiny files (e.g. B_chart_magic >> moz in the attached 5300KB > 143 KB) with almost zero perceptual difference. All progs mentioned here can be also installed via homebrew. For a free full-fledged GUI batch image converter, check the multi-platform XnConvert, just don't use lanczos to downscale ,-)

    TESTS - 18 images
    Here are some chart images if you want to peep, bear in mind they all have been stripped from any metadata. -

    The whole truth about...

  • Quick follow up on the guetzli business:

    Multiplatform FOSS java GUI {hicup} for guetzli. Allows folder batch, mem and proc limit and multithread when batching (!!). It doesn't do anything extra to the CLI, but some folks like a spoon to eat ice-cream

  • As I was posting this elsewhere I thought Maybe Vitaliy might like this one... hung somewhere on a forums' wall and so I'll leave it also here. Talking about photographers that inspired us... Allan Sekula, a tremendously honest and hard-working artist. Had the incredible privilege of assisting him for a couple days.

    From Dear Bill Gates




    R.I.P. David Goldblatt

    A goddamn hard working honest photographer; his work of Apartheid is tremendous.
    I was lucky enough to meet him… and attend a wonderful masterclass, several lifes ago


                                      gashô                                              gashô                                              gashô