Muuuh Nature & Wildlife

Photo Editing Workflow

Last modified on 2023-03-25. This page is dedicated to nature lovers and wildlife photographers. Written and regularly updated by Karl-Heinz Müller Dipl. Natw. ETH, Biology. With 10 years of experience in wildlife photography, Karl-Heinz shares first-hand, on-site collected observations, photos and videos from his frequent visits to parks in and around Montreal.

How to import, edit and publish photos using Photo Mechanic and Affinity Photo 2, starting with a raw file.

Photo Mechanic

When importing files from the memory card using Photo Mechanic, all imported files are copied into a folder with the date the photo shoot. The files are renamed. e.g. yyyymmdd/khm-yyyymmdd-hhss-10digitnumber.nef. Later on in the post-production, the filename won't change, allowing the location of the original RAW file anytime.

If we use HDR merge or Focus shifting merge, the resulting file will use the filename of the first shot in the sequence.

  • After import, review all photos, delete low quality photos (key "t", "command + t" to select all files tagged for trash.)
  • Apply star rating to photos which will be edited (3 stars Unsplash Editorial, 2 stars Unsplash, 1 star Website)

Affinity Photo - Single Shot and Focus Shifting

Use reveal in finder to localize the raw file to be edited. Usually, photo editing is done fast, not more than 15minutes. Photo Editing Workflow has been topic of different live streams in Muuuh's YT Channel.

Current Workflow - Single Shot

  • Open with Affinity Photo
  • Skip raw person but make sure that lens correction is applied
  • Crop to optimize composition (original ratio) - destructive
  • Remove dust spots and disturbances with inpainting brush tool (new pixel layer, checked current layer & below)
  • Noise reduction live filter (if necessary)
  • Add adjustment layer HSL (saturation)
  • Add adjustment layer curves (improve range dark/light)
  • Test haze removal / depth of field blur
  • Apply live 4 high pass filters and find sweet spot (sharpening without halo)
  • Apply median blur (remove spots introduced by sharpening)
  • Apply vignette (only if push attention)
  • Apply exposure shift (optional)
  • Apply white balance
  • Apply another noise reduction live filter (if necessary)
  • Export to jpg max quality, file size <10MB

End with exposure adjustment and brightness/contrast adjustment layers moving histogram into the middle and spreading the width.

All photos are exported to one dedicated folder. This folder is named by the year.

Focus Shifting & Exposure Merge

For sets of shots originated from focus shifting or exposure merge, the initial steps are different. Example see on YouTube Focus Shifting + Focus Merge

  • In Affinity Photo select "New Photo Merge"
  • Select the set of photos from the focus shifting
  • Continue with crop

Publishing Photos

High quality photos are published in Unsplash.

Before a photo can be published in, instructions for IMGIX image rendering service may have to be modified. By default, crop instruction "entropy" is used which doesn't work well in all cases. If necessary, entropy is changed to focal point with x and y coordinates.

  • Add record to the website's photo database (camera, lens, camera settings, file size, title, caption, species and location)
  • Upload file to Google Cloud bucket serving the CDN (IMGIX)
  • Re-deploy website which will publish the new photo in the pages defined by species and location

To learn more about how re-deploy of Muuuh's website works, visit