This week-end, I re-tested the ability to get results close to the OOC JPEG with the scene-linear workflow, on Panasonic and Nikon cameras, because I started to wonder if I was deluded after the load of incomprehension this has started.
So, yes, it’s definitely possible and quite fast.
Notice that my screen is set for Adobe RGB while Gnome screenshot tool seems to assume it’s sRGB so all colours look desaturated
Camera auto white balance did a good job, there is no clipped highlights, that’s a pretty great start. We won’t need to bother about white balance. Also, the lens correction is just a matter of enabling the module, it will fetch automatically the Lensfun database for the proper lens profile, so no need to bother if your camera + lens combo is supported.
Just enable filmic with default params:
It lacks a bit of crunch, so auto-set the the white exposure with the colour picker on the waves (the brightest area), and the black exposure on with the colour picker on the trees (the darkest area):
Then, reduce a tad the latitude to avoid the curve clipping (orange part at the bottom), and lower the scene grey point reference to brighten the picture globally: (notice it is equivalent to raising the exposure compensation in the exposure module, and then accounting for the change in filmic white and black exposure settings, it’s just faster this way since scene grey auto-adjust white and black in filmic)¹
¹ : for big mid-tones corrections, you might want to setup filmic grey level to 18% and to use the exposure module to raise the overall brightness. It will make the filmic easier to control. Notice that dividing filmic scene grey by 2 is exactly equivalent to adding 1 EV in exposure module, the difference is only in the UI.
This is all lacking some saturation. Just increase it in color balance:
Although it’s not needed, for the sake of the demo, here is how I would even the white balance in the image, between shadows and highlights:
(This step of white-balance is removed for the final comparison below).
The beauty of the local contrast is you can get quite harsh on the settings, it holds steadily. Also, if you are happy with the general contrast after filmic, you can set highlights and shadows corrections to 0:
You actually got your retouch in 3 steps, guys ! How much more simpler do you expect me to make darktable ?