Sorry for haven’t been active here, quite busy with work.
I haven’t give up, but in all truth, is not that I’m actually migrating.
The way I see it, to me it’s a matter of what suits better my needs, and if it’s a commercial software it’s a matter of course of whether I can afford it or not.
I know many people choose FOSS also (and maybe sometimes only because) it follows a different approach to the ecosystem of software and development.
I use commercial software for my job and I couldn’t change even if I wanted to. Photography is for me different, it’s more a passion, therefore I have more choice. Ironically, more choice means more time to spend figuring things out, which is not always ideal.
All that said, it’s really a matter of balance and personal habits. I used to spend a lot of time learning software and techniques, mainly because I found it fun and it served my job, but also because I believe sometimes starting from scratch can be a healthy thing. When I learned Blender there was no one-click solution and that made me learn things I avoided or overlooked even after years of doing 3D professionally. It definitely payed off.
But now I do photography as a form of liberation from the technicalities, it makes me go out and move and feel more connected to what I feel rather then spending time at a desk. So, with the spare time left, right now I test the software to let me develop my raw files, hoping to find the right balance between a good understanding of the technical aspects, but also having fun on the creative side.
I’m testing Rawtherapee again after having played with it a few times in the past. The feeling hasn’t changed in terms of usability: I find the overall experience sluggish, at times confusing with the UI design choices, and a little overwhelming. Nonetheless, I understand there’s a lot going on with RT and there’s much power under the hood.
As it usually happens for this type of things (and in life in general I would add), there isn’t a perfect solution. DT feels faster, smoother, I like the group idea, the masking tools, the option to duplicate the modules, the overall speed. With RT I know I can push the development when I need it, but I miss those good things from DT. Adobe is something I have been using for 20 years now, it feels like being at home, but I don’t like their business model, their idea of adding eye candy for the mass and leaving the programs buggy for the professional users. The other thing, keeping automatic process happening without the users being aware of it, doesn’t bug me. It’s simply a different approach, some may need that environment, some don’t. The ideal solution? Something powerful (RT + DT I guess), with a simple UI, with the option to go deeper when it’s needed keeping the experience simple and smooth.
And then I want to read. We talk a lot about software, but any discipline, photography is no exception, needs a solid understanding of the fundamentals and creative aspects. Good books can add a lot to our understanding: studying art, how to work with black & white, social implications of the medium… There’s a tons to digest, but that’s the beauty, at least for me as I enjoy the feeling of learning.
Sorry, too much typing on the keyboard tonight, long post