[PlayRaw] Mairi Troisieme

I had mentioned on the Play Raw thread about having some files I would be happy to share with everyone to work on. While not technically a competition I thought it would be fun to see what other folks might come up with from the same base image. (This feels like it’s mostly in line with the spirit of PlayRaw from the old forums).

So, here we are. This is the raw file for my portrait of my friend Mairi that I called Mairi Troisième (on Flickr


Download the .ORF raw file here (from Google Drive, 13MB).

This file is licensed
(Creative Commons, By-Attribution, Non-Commercial, Share-Alike).

This is actually the same raw file used in an upcoming chiaroscuro portrait tutorial (that will likely be published over on www.libregraphicsworld.org).

If anyone wants another portrait retouching tutorial I refer you to the older Open Source Portrait (Mairi) on the main site (that one also includes another raw file for download and use).


Thanks, @patdavid. :smiley:
How would like to see the results - jpeg and .pp3 file as attachments??


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Good question! I’m personally fine with just seeing the jpeg results you come up with, though others might appreciate the .pp3/.xmp processing files as well. I think the point is to help others learn from each other.

How about jpeg + processing sidecar?

A quick secret tip: People using darktable and export to JPEG automatically have the XMP embedded, so you can just treat the JPEG as an XMP and load it into darktable. :slightly_smiling:


I went for an old fashioned look, RawTherapee and McGimp-2.9


Just RawTherapee. Simple curves, Channel Mixer for toning, CbDL for skin smoothing and Wavelets for a little pop in the eyes.

Mairi_Troisieme_900.jpg.out.pp3 (9.8 KB)


Just RawTherapee: white balance, exposure and film emulation (Agfa AXP25), plus a few other bits ‘n’ bobs.
Mairi_Troisieme.ORF.pp3 (5.8 KB)


@Morgan_Hardwood, can you explain how you used wavelets for “a little pop in the eyes”?

Nicely done with the image too.

OK, here’s my interpretation. All in Rawtherapee.

Took a few goes to get the eyes sharp, to start with I turned off sharpening to do some noise reduction, but that left me with soft eyes, so turned sharpening back on and noise reduction off.

I tried quite a few crops, but in the end I felt the sense of the chair gave context to the post itself.

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Lovely friend/model!

Darktable only so far: Mairi_Troisieme.ORF.xmp (57.6 KB)

I tried to go for a natural look colour-wise, though I do really like the more muted colours of your result, @patdavid. I used Darktable’s masks for skin softening and slight emphasis of the eyes and lips, and also for the equalizer to try to bring out the detail in that cardigan. (I have a thing for nice cardigans.)

I’d be really interested to learn how you achieved that painterly-yet-defined look in the face, @patdavid. Do you know of any videos or afticles on the techniques involved you could point me to by any chance?

Edit: sorry - I’ve just seen the link you put to the portrait tutorial in your original post, so I’ll read that first.

Edit 2: wow, that wavelet decompose! I’ll have to give that a go. I wonder how far I could get with this kind of thing using Darktable’s equalizer. Thanks for the articles!

Maybe that’s part of it, as your image seems to have a similar quality to the face?

Good to know!


Here is my attempt, entirely edited with photoflow.

Nothing extra-terrestrial, I’ve just tried to make a subtle use of RGB curves, sharpening and local masks. What I did:

  • bumped +1EV the RAW exposure
  • added some contrast + blue/teal toning with RGB curves, then added some bottom/left vignetting to give a stronger impression of a top/right light source, and finally locally increased the contrast in the eyes. All done with RGB curves + opacity masks
  • sharpened with RL deconvolution, with a stronger affect in the eyes
  • cropped with 3/4 aspect ratio and with the eyes at the level of the upper 1/3 line

Here is the result:

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Had a second go! Using UFRaw!! and GIMP. The wavelet sharpening in GIMP seems to give better results than the sharpening in RawTherapee (I find, anyway).

This time I was trying for the ‘old master’ look that Pat seems to like. Overlaid a scratch texture with a vignette to give an ‘old, distressed’ feel.



I must say the original is a beautiful picture. My attempt, using only RawTherapee

Mairi_Troisieme.ORF.pp3 (9.7 KB)

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Plain B&W using only RT.

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Wow, what a great response from everyone! Thank you all for taking some time to play around and share your results with us.

I appreciate all of the kind comments about my original image (I’m sure Mairi does as well… :slight_smile: ). I realized some time ago that the fundamental thing about art to me is that it’s an interpretation of the world through the artists eyes. So these are really fun to see how everyone interprets the same file differently according to their tastes. :smiley:

Thank you. I felt the image needed something a little softer and muted (contrary to some old masters…).

I’m assuming you found it? :slight_smile: I’ve been saying for a long time that just about any portrait can be nicely improved with just a bit of smoothing on a large(r) frequency. In [my tutorial example][ex] the skin tones overall are greatly improved by only applying a slight blur on a midde/low frequency:
[ex]: PIXLS.US - An Open Source Portrait (Mairi)

A Tutorial

I actually have a full-length tutorial on how I created the original image (in darktable + GIMP + G’MIC) coming soon. I offered it to my friend that runs www.libregraphicsworld.org to publish. I’ll re-publish it here on pixls.us as well once it goes live on LGW.

Mairi is Lena 2.0 …

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Does this mean I’ll now have to grab a slightly more risqué image of Mairi to use? :blush:

We haven’t seen the bottom of that one yet :slight_smile:

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I laughed harder than I should have at that. Also, I’m pretty certain the bottom of either of those might not be worksafe. :slight_smile: