Workflow (6): looking back at the whole process

OK, now we have followed step-by-step the process work on photos from them being taken in camera as RAW or JPEG files to the production of a high-quality image file. What is commonly named “workflow”. Because things are a bit complicated and required quite a few verbose blog entries, here is a little drawing summarizing the different steps:


* Color Management aware application

For details (and starting from the top):

I have also added an arrow to open a JPEG picture directly in Cinepaint for high-quality processing, in case the shot was taken in JPEG only – in that case, open the file in Cinepaint, convert it to 16 bits / channel (to use the maximum quality from now on) and then start editing your image.

Now, I am doing that daily (say, weekly) and find this workflow very smooth and easy going. Downloading files from the camera, batching the RAWs to JPEGs, checking out these JPEGs files for keepers, trying a few quickies in The Gimp and maybe have one or two images worth firing up Ufraw and / or Cinepaint.

However, when I see so many arrows all over the places, I just wonder: would it be possible to have an easier workflow that would be something like:


Well, you saw it coming from 500 yards, these “mystery guests” are called Adobe Lightroom (web, wiki) and Aperture (web, wiki). But they are neither open source software nor working on Linux. However there are a couple of interesting programs in the making based on that concept, that we will talk about in the next posts.

Since for once this post is more colorful (thanks to the pretty Tango icons) than the usual verbosity, here is my favorite picture of these days, shot in a close by arboretum (and processed with the “long workflow”):



4 Responses to Workflow (6): looking back at the whole process

  1. Hi Daniel,

    Why not DigiKam as the mystery guest?
    (apart from the Phonom prolem in Ubuntu/Xubuntu)

    And have you tried out Blue Marine?
    I did, not to impressed since every time I started it some thing new broke and somtehing that was broken last time it started began to work.

    But it would be nice to see you do a piece on it here.


  2. Joel, I’ve found your blog very interesting as I’ve been trying to find my way to work with RAW easily and effectively too.

    Thanks to your posts, I also discovered (rather, convinced myself) I need to calibrate my monitor with some instrument, otherwise I may be wasting my time 🙂

    I usually use digiKam for managing and UFRaw for processing. It works well for me.

    BTW, I stepped across Bibble 5 ( – it is not FOSS, but it looks really powerful, I tried it for a few minutes tonight.

  3. Alotment says:

    interesting indeed. Same workflow issues here.
    My main issue is how to delete raw and jpeg at the same time.
    I always take raw+jpeg with the camera.
    I use many viewers, but say one that sees only jpeg is best (like Gwenview).
    I delete all the unwanted jpeg.
    Then I run a script of mine that delete any raw file that does not have a corresponding jpeg in a given directory.

    Any idea how to browse jpeg and delete jpeg and raw at the same time with a clever delete command (not by human selection of two files each time).

  4. What about creating a simple script that will perform necessary checks and removal operation. Next, create a custom Nautilus action which uses the script

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