Tuesday, March 10, 2009

DPReview Challenges

Recently, I submitted a photo to the DPReview challenge for faceless portraits. I placed 126th out of 427 entries. Not bad, considering my subject material was neither nude, nor female. :)

I still have a lot to learn about this whole digital photography thing. Lately I've been playing with different programs for converting the raw image the camera takes. Usually I use UFRaw (gotta download the latest version of that shortly) which is a free open source utility. I've also used Adobe Lightroom, DXO, and Capture One (version 4) on an evaluation basis, and I have a copy of Capture One LE that's pretty good too.

What this means in practical terms is that I don't just process each image once, but often once per raw converter, and then compare the results. So far, none of the commercial packages have been substantially better than UFRaw. Capture One LE came with some of the memory cards I purchased. The package from DXO purports to correct barrel distortion and chromatic aberration. My Pentax 16-50 lens does exhibit some barrel distortion wide open at 16 when shooting square subjects (like paintings) but as you can see below, that's easily fixed by zooming in a bit.....Keeping track of all these pictures isn't easy, but I'm slowly developing some semblance of a system.....Now, if GIMP would hurry up and release version 3, which is supposed to have support for 16 bit TIFF images, my toolbox would be close to complete...... :)


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