Monthly Archives: February 2008

When thing goes wrong, just be cool about it


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Batch photo editing, The Linux way


I’m really in love with those tiny tools that can do the magic to you when you are really depressed looking for a miracle to get your task done.

I work as action photographer in my free time and yesterday I had to edit 200 shot in a very short time, first I downloaded the RAWs into my computer and then started to delete the ruined ones and then I needed a way to convert all of my CR2 files into JPG; after bit of googling I found that there is a living application out there called DCRAW that let you decode all of your RAW files and then you can pass your decoded data into a tiny application called CJPEG that can compress the image file into JPEG image file and so I did

  1. for i in *.CR2; do dcraw -c -a -w -v   $i | cjpeg -quality 100 > $i.jpg; done;

This is the magic of command line tools in GNU/Linux, I was able to get all of my RAWs decoded and converted into JPEG in about two hours which includes googling for for the way to batch edit photos and convert RAWs to JPEG.

If you are into Photography then you would understand how many hours I have saved to get this task done.

Later I wanted to add a border and my signature to all of these photos plus I needed to resize them for web usage so I used Phatch.

Phatch is a simple to use cross-platform graphical Photo Batch Processor and Exif Renamer with a nice graphical user interface. Phatch handles all popular image formats and can duplicate (sub)folder hierarchies. Phatch can batch resize, rotate, apply shadows, perspective, rounded corners, … and do much more actions in minutes instead of hours or days if you do it manually.

I can certainly confirm that phatchs saved lots of my time, in return I’ll start translating it into Arabic language out of respect and to give something back to the developers and the community.

Photo editing under Linux isn’t that user friendly yet, but I’m pretty sure it will definitely be user friendly when Phatch get stabilised and gets more features.

NOTE: This example was tested with dcraw v8.80 and cjpeg 6b. cjpeg is available under libjpeg-progs package.

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