Is it possible for a professional photographer to use a FOSS-based workflow?
I'm a professional photographer based out of Miami, Florida. I learned photography on my own, starting at age 12, with a Yashica TL Electro 35mm film SLR. In college, I discovered I also had quite an affinity for computers and programming, so I got my degrees in that field. I landed an IT job in county government, and photography took a back seat in my life until two things happened: I became a father, and the digital revolution came to the world of photography.
I dove into digital photography as it made practicing my art economical in the extreme. Having a child meant plenty of opportunities to take photos. All of my photographer friends suddenly needed someone who could understand both computers and photography, and I was conveniently placed to help them.
I turned pro in 2008, when a local ballet troupe asked me to photograph their performance of The Nutcracker. Other performances followed, and my skills were further honed. I later was asked by the late Pedro Pablo Peña to photograph his International Ballet Festival, which I did for two years.
Fast-forward to 2014 when I started a photography club at my day job and offered free photography lessons, once a month, to any fellow employees willing to listen.
In 2017, at the behest of my club members, I was asked to assemble a low-cost photography laptop configuration, as many of my students wanted to expand their photographic skills in the post-processing side of digital photography. I completed my task, assembling a reasonable portable digital darkroom for less than $700 USD that included all necessary photo-editing software with no recurring monthly fees, an upgraded hard drive and a colorimeter.
The laptop turned out so well, I decided to take the plunge myself and converted my Windows 10 workstation (custom-built by me) to a dedicated FOSS photography workstation.