RAW File Processing and Image Optimisation of Your Photograph

A great photograph always starts with a great capture in the field and capturing stunning Landscape, Nature and Wildlife photographs in the field is a skill in and of itself. Once you have captured the RAW data in the field though how do you interpret it and fulfil your vision in file and finished print?


Processing your RAW file optimally is the key to getting stunning images that realise the captures full potential and your vision for the finished photograph. Workflow and how to best optimise your capture are two of the questions I am most often asked on my workshops. The reality is there is no one simple answer that can be applied to all captures to really coax them to their full potential. It takes time, practice and experience to know which tool to use when, whilst processing RAW files. A one-trick filter or preset might work for some images but it  falls well short of optimal image processing. To help with your RAW files  I am very pleased to now offer a service where you can have your RAW file optimally processed and if you so choose, have a Fine Art Print of your photograph lovingly crafted right here in my studio. The purpose of this service is to be able to provide a finished optimised and processed RAW file complete with all meta-data of exactly what was done to the image during post production. A layered PSD file is also provided along with the processed RAW file that includes any and all adjustments made in Photoshop so that you can see exactly how the image was processed and then if you wish apply this process to more of your own files. Importantly, all post processing faithfully reproduces the intent of the original file in accordance with my own ethics for RAW image processing. This includes any adjustments normally allowed by competitions including Nature’s Best Photography and BBC wildlife Photographer of the Year.

The process of having your own RAW file processed is very simple. You simply send me an email with your request and then upload the RAW file/s to a drop box or other file sharing program of your choice for processing. Processing is done in Adobe Lightroom Creative Cloud and Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud. Once the image has been processed you will be able to download the RAW file complete with an XMP sidecar file that gives you a step-by-step process on how the image was processed. In addition, you will be able to download a high resolution 16 bit layered PSD file that contains any and all adjustments that may have been made in Photoshop. The purpose of providing the layered PSD file is to allow you to see exactly what adjustments were made to the image and in what order. You can then use these same techniques on more of your own images if you wish. Once you have uploaded your RAW file and sent me an email you will receive an invoice for payment which can be paid either via Paypal or Credit Card (Visa or Mastercard).

Ultimately the purpose of this service is to provide you with the finished optimised RAW file complete with all metadata changes as well as the layered PSD file so that you can use this information to better improve your own image processing techniques.


Turn This: Original Canon EOS 1DX .CR2 RAW File Capture with Canon 200-400mm F4L IS Lens with inbuilt 1.4 Teleconverter ISO200 F11 1/400 of a second  – On a Really Right Stuff TVC24L Tripod with Jobu Gimbal Mount.


Into This: Finished High Resolution Processed PSD File 


  • Faithful processing of your original RAW file in Adobe Lightroom with sidecar XMP containing all the meta data adjustments
  • A High Resolution Layered 16 bit PSD file containing any and all adjustments made in Adobe Photoshop
  • If any cropping is recommended you will be supplied with two versions – the original uncropped image and a cropped version


  • No HDR High Dynamic Range or multi-image composites. If you have these sort of requirements for your finished images you are better off engaging someone who specialises in this sort of post production work
  • A processed image that does not adhere to the original colour and integrity of the RAW file capture
  • Any cloning or removal of objects outside of sensor dust
  • Any digital manipulation that falls outside of that normally allowed by competitions such as Natures Best Photography and BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year


The cost to have your RAW file optimally processed and delivered along with a high resolution 16 bit layered PSD file is $110 AUD inclusive of GST per image.


1. How long does it take you to process a file?
It takes anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour or more to properly process a RAW file and produce a PSD that I consider to be finished and optimised.  Much of that time is often taken up with deciding how to get the optimum result and it often takes some experimentation to really bring out the best in each file.
2. How long from when I upload my RAW file until you can process it and return it?
This depends on my current workload and travel schedule. If I am currently in my studio in Australia the typical turnaround is 3-5 days depending on my current workload. If I am travelling I will send you an email with an updated time of when I can work on your file/s.
3. What do you do with the RAW file afterwards?
All RAW files are deleted along with the PSD files once they are returned to you. I do not keep copies after they are returned. Please note that you need to back-up your own images.
4. My RAW file was returned to me unprocessed?
If your RAW file was returned to you unprocessed you will have also received an email explaining that it could not be processed for some technical reason. These include but are not limited too ‘poor exposure with blown highlights or blocked up shadows’, ‘out of focus’, ‘corrupted file’ or similar technical reason.
5. What if I am not happy with the result?
You will receive a full refund.
6. Do you process the file or do you have someone do it for you?
I personally process and handle your RAW file. No one else will touch it.
7. Can I send you multiple RAW files and ask you to choose the best one?
Please don’t upload multiple RAW files and ask me to choose the best one. This is not an image editing service. The purpose of this service is to provide an optimally processed RAW file and a high resolution layered PSD file so that you can see exactly what was done to the file to eek out the very best from it. If you wish to have your work edited it is better to engage the services of an image editor.
8. I have a lot of images the same. How do I choose the best RAW file to send you?
Check your images for exposure. The best exposure will likely be the one where the histogram is biased towards the right without clipping. Also check your RAW files for sharpness. The best RAW file will be the one that combines the best exposure with the sharpest result.
9. Can I send you Portraits or photographs that don’t fall into the Landscape, Nature or Wildlife Categories?
No. This service is only offered for the processing of RAW files that fall into the Landscape, Nature or Wildlife categories. If you have portrait or other images that require processing or retouching you are better off contacting someone who specialises in the respective genre.
10. Can you make a Fine Art Print of my finished PSD file and send it to me?
Yes. Fine Art Printing of your finished PSD file is available. Please contact me for details.

One thought on “RAW File Processing and Image Optimisation of Your Photograph

  1. I love the polar bear hugging a mound. How much is this picture. It would be for personal use for my home . I am happy to have it printed if easier


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