Photography and free software

Today I’m launching my new website. Initially it’s about photography and in particular panoramic photography, but I shall no doubt digress into areas of digital image processing and computing generally as time goes on. As an amateur photographer familiar with Photoshop and Lightroom, I have been looking at alternatives since I first installed Ubuntu 8.04 (Linux) on my 2nd computer in 2008. I soon found Joel Cornuz’s blog “Linux Photography” and am pleased to say that after being dormant for almost 3 years it is now active again. I can recommend it to anyone interested in this topic.

After spending some time over the last few years trying Gimp, Cinepaint and Rawtherapee, I have concluded that an unbiassed assessment is very difficult because of the steep learning curve involved. It is said that “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” but I am no less enthusiastic about the potential of these applications and intend to follow their development further.

I have been very satisfied with the use of entirely free software to produce a stitched panorama.The above pano was produced using Rawtherapee (Raw converter), Hugin (Panorama stitcher) and Cinepaint (Image processor) running on Ubuntu (Operating System). The result is as good as any produced by ‘commercial’ software. The full resolution version (over 30 Megapixels) viewed at 100%, shows no defects.

Incidentally this website looks pretty good on the Midori browser running on my Raspberry Pi – but that’s another story.

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