Working with digital images 14

Yesterday when I came home the sun was shining and it was beautiful out. I grabbed the camera and started taking some pictures. I decided to do some experimentation with working in raw mode. Higher end digital cameras can save images in what is called a raw mode. In raw mode the image is saved exactly as it comes off the sensor with no adjustments for white balance, sharpening or anything else. There is also no lossy compression that you get when you save to jpeg. Here is one image of a tree in my front yard exactly as it came out of the camera.

Unretouched tree

Then I played around with the Image in Gimpshop, an open-source free clone of photoshop. This is what I eventually got.

Modified tree

I took some photography classes when I was in high school, and did a lot of darkroom work. But I can do so much more now with images than I ever could them. And all without the smelly chemicals.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

14 thoughts on “Working with digital images

  • reinvented

    Correct me if I’m wrong, Sam, but wasn’t there a darkroom at the Hamilton YMCA too? Seems to me that it was right across the hallway from the “crafts room” on the basement level down from the Youth Department.

  • Sam Post author

    Indeed there was Peter. Thats where I learned a lot of what I knew from Gary Fliss. I did a lot of experimentation there, almost exclusively with black and white. But I can do so many other things now and for a lot less cost and hassle. I can try a lot different ideas and see results instantly. Also with the digital camera I can play with different exposures evaluate the results and modify what I am doing in the field. There are still things about film that are better or different, but frankly the only film I have shot in the last 5 years is with a disposable underwater camera when we were in hawaii last year. Oh BTW welcome the blog. How are Oliver’s swim lessons going?

  • trusty getto

    I started using Gimp myself, and it’s absolutely fantastic!!! I’ll never pay for software again!!! I do everything on it, and it’s easier to use than photoshop.

  • Sam Post author

    Have you tried Gimpshop? It is based off of Gimp but a developer reconfigured the menus so that they would be the same photoshop. That way if someone is used to using photoshop the transition will be easier. Open source software in general is awesome. I am using a lot of it now. I use most of the products of mozilla including firefox, thunderbird, sunbird and nvu. I also use openoffice 2, filezilla, Dave Winer’s OPML outliner, and others. I have a bunch of links over on one of the pages on my main site at The stuff here is not all open source but it is all free.

  • Sam Post author

    Oh one more thing, even though open source software is free, it is a good idea to contribute once in a while if you find something useful. All these developers are doing some great work it anything we can do to help is good.

  • Sam Post author

    If you are not already used to the photoshop interface, it doesn’t make any difference if you use gimp or Gimpshop. However, if you are using some photoshop books or tutorials, using the the Gimpshop version can make it easier to find the functions when the instructions are referencing photoshop. As for contributing, even though the software is free many sites may have a paypal tip jar or contribution button. It is good to throw a few bucks the developers way to help offset costs for things like hosting and other expenses. If someone has a site serving up thousands of copies of software or hosting forums, the bandwidth bills can add up.