So here’s an interesting challenge I offered the Darktable developers in another thread, thinking that it was just me having trouble with the tool. Turns out, I actually stumbled upon a lot of newbies mistakes but also key limitations of our free software tools. A bunch of people joined in to figure out what was up with that file and it was a bunch of fun.
I nevertheless kept going and processed a final picture out of this thread. It turns out the picture I chose to do those tests was (somewhat intentionally) a zoom of a larger picture which I think is a slightly better subject, because it brings new interesting elements in the frame. I ended up with this processing.
So here’s the result of my processing of the larger picture:
I’m very curious to see what you people make out of this. The key challenges here for me were getting clarity in the image (there’s smog in the city which tones down everything) while keeping the spirit of the picture (that there’s a hazy horizon). I was looking for dark tones (it’s night time) and punchy/realistic colors, although I’m not a fan of excentric HDR tonemaps…
I’m at this stage of creation when I can’t bare looking at the thing anymore. Hopefully it’s somewhat good. I feel the bridge has lost definition, but I’m afraid that touching it will make everything else fall apart: after all, as we’ve seen in another thread, Lightroom and the camera are just cheating us of those details, so there isn’t much we can do, so I’ve come to embrace that noise.
Here’s the RAW file: DSCF1112.RAF (22.8 MB)
From what I understood in that other thread, the JPG above can serve as a sidecar as well in Darktable (that’s pretty neat!) but I’d be happy to share the sidecar of the above as well if that assumption turns out to be incorrect on my part.
Like most my work, this photograph is released as Creative Commons, By-Attribution, Share-Alike.