To get from the original to the final, the irst step is importing the RAW file into your RAW editor and letting the program do any base settings. Darktable (the RAW editor I use) applies a base curve and sharpening upon import.
After importing its time to adjust the exposure and white balance. The white balance would be optional, as I like to add a slight boost to the color temperature (as many digital cameras have a tendency to produce colder color tones) on many photos. The next two steps are also optional, but were used to produce the image below: perform a slight de-noise and then a slight sharpen to the image. Lastly boost the fill light to finish out the image recovery and we are done after exporting the finished product.
|Original, too dark photo|