Software Engineer

i’ve been busy… digital proofsheets (pt. 1)

· by jsnby · Read in about 2 min · (370 Words)
Computers Photography

Last weekend we went to Davis for picnic day. I wrangled my buddy James into going out at sunrise to check out some bridges in the countryside. I shot a couple rolls of film (Kodak Plus-X 125) while I was up there. Since PCC is currently on spring break, I’ll have to wait until next week to develop it.

One really positive thing that has come out of my photo class is that I have discovered that I really like proofsheets. I mean, I really, really like proofsheets. I’m not sure exactly what it is about them, but I think they add a lot of value to the whole process. They show what you were thinking as you were working the camera. They tell the story of the shoot itself, its successes and its failures. I like them so much that I started looking for software to make them for digital pictures. I found that photoshop has a feature to do this, but I tried it and I didn’t really like it. I checked out and there was only one piece of software to do it. Without even trying this software, I decided to write something myself.

I have a fair bit of experience manipulating images with perl(using ImageMagick and GD) and php (using GD). I wanted to keep this software simple, but be completely configurable. I didn’t want to write some sort of web frontend for it, so I decided that I would start by writing a perl library to do all the heavy lifting. Then, I could either write a simple script to be the front-end, a Tk GUI interface, or a web based cgi interface.

I decided to start with using ImageMagick’s perl api (PerlMagick) to do the image manipulation. I’ll probably write a GD based version too because I found some parts of ImageMagick’s api cumbersome (specifically when trying to place text with good precision). I’ll be releasing this code soon under the programming section of my site. I want to add a little more polish and perhaps an example Tk frontend or some more example scripts. Here are a couple of examples:

By default, the module outputs 8”x10” images at 300 dpi (2400x3000 pixels).