B/W conversion experiment


terje-l

Link Posted 08/11/2008 - 22:20
Tried to convert a rather dull colour photo to b/w, using layers, to create a more dramatic effect:




Question is, does it work?
Best regards
Terry

K20D, Optio I10, DA 18-55 1:3.5-5.6 AL II, A 1:1.7/50, D FA 1:2.8/100 Macro, Sigma 70-300 1:4-5.6 APO DG Macro, Pentax AF 360FGZ

divtag

Link Posted 08/11/2008 - 22:58
a dull photo will allways be a dull photo, but yeah... it's possible
to squeeze some drama out of a few shots.

edit: oh and please misunderstand me the "right" way.. dull can be very beautiful=)
Last Edited by divtag on 08/11/2008 - 23:12

johnriley

Link Posted 08/11/2008 - 23:30
How did you do the conversion?
Best regards, John

Lilly

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 08:07
Not for me I am afraid, like Divtag says why try and make a dull bland image into an even more boring image.

A lot of people assume any colour shot will convert - it WONT.

If we go back to te good ol' days when we shot in mono film, we attempted to shoot specifically for mono type images (well I did anyway), ie texture, light, form, shape, contrast.
So, my advice for you is to do the same even though we have digital.

To get the eye for a mono image get a red filter (you used to be able to buy mono eye viewers, cant find now) and view before you shoot to see if any of those elements are there and look at famous b&w photographers work to get inspiration for subject matter and method.
website
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Pentax: K20D; FA50mm 1.4; FA135mm 2.8; FA 17-28mm; FA 80-320mm; AF360FGZ
Sigma: 30mm F1.4EXDC; 10-20mmEXDC ..... LENSBABY 'Composer' ,

Lilly

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 08:30
Here are some examples of those qualities that I mean, hope this helps:

























Lilly
website
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Pentax: K20D; FA50mm 1.4; FA135mm 2.8; FA 17-28mm; FA 80-320mm; AF360FGZ
Sigma: 30mm F1.4EXDC; 10-20mmEXDC ..... LENSBABY 'Composer' ,

ttk

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 10:12
Nice shots Lilly you have a good eye for photography..
Tel,

Gwyn

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 10:15
Is the top one Taos Pueblo?

terje-l

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 12:31
johnriley wrote:
How did you do the conversion?

Hi John,

I tried a method described in The Photoshop Elements 6 Book by Scott Kelby:

1. Opened the image in PSE6
2. Created an Adjustment Layer/Levels
3. Set the foreground colour to black and created an Adjustment Layer/Gradient Map
4. Back to the Levels layer, tweaked each colour channel (R, G and B) to adjust detail and contrast
5. Flattened image, resized to 800 pixels and saved jpeg file.

This is supposed to give more control than just desaturating the original picture. But obviously it takes some training to get it right. Maybe a suitable activity now that the evenings are long and dark.

As for Lilly's images, well, they are in a totally different league. I have a long way to go.
Best regards
Terry

K20D, Optio I10, DA 18-55 1:3.5-5.6 AL II, A 1:1.7/50, D FA 1:2.8/100 Macro, Sigma 70-300 1:4-5.6 APO DG Macro, Pentax AF 360FGZ

Gwyn

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 12:39
Have you tried the B/W conversion tool in PSE 6? you can tweak it about as much as you like. I have tried both the conversion tool and Scott Kelby's method. The latter takes quite some practice, the former is great for a quick conversion.

terje-l

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 14:34
Thanks, Gwyn, will have a look into it.
Best regards
Terry

K20D, Optio I10, DA 18-55 1:3.5-5.6 AL II, A 1:1.7/50, D FA 1:2.8/100 Macro, Sigma 70-300 1:4-5.6 APO DG Macro, Pentax AF 360FGZ

johnriley

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 16:33
I think it needs more "bite" as it's a bit flat in terms of contrast. Maybe a bit more tweaking would pay dividends.

The composition is good.
Best regards, John

Lilly

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 18:51
Gwyn wrote:
Is the top one Taos Pueblo?

Yes, it is - an amazing place, you been there too? Taken with 35mm.
website
BLOG
FLICKR

Pentax: K20D; FA50mm 1.4; FA135mm 2.8; FA 17-28mm; FA 80-320mm; AF360FGZ
Sigma: 30mm F1.4EXDC; 10-20mmEXDC ..... LENSBABY 'Composer' ,

Lilly

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 19:01
terje-l wrote:
johnriley wrote:
How did you do the conversion?

Hi John,

I tried a method described in The Photoshop Elements 6 Book by Scott Kelby:

1. Opened the image in PSE6
2. Created an Adjustment Layer/Levels
3. Set the foreground colour to black and created an Adjustment Layer/Gradient Map
4. Back to the Levels layer, tweaked each colour channel (R, G and B) to adjust detail and contrast
5. Flattened image, resized to 800 pixels and saved jpeg file.

This is supposed to give more control than just desaturating the original picture. But obviously it takes some training to get it right. Maybe a suitable activity now that the evenings are long and dark.

As for Lilly's images, well, they are in a totally different league. I have a long way to go.

I still think you need to get a 'right' image to start with otherwise you are on a hiding to nowhere.
Get a good structured image typ of the ones I have shown but in colour and to start of as I did yonks ago, just make an ajustment layer for channel mixer - make sure they add up to 100% then tweek levels till it looks good and take it from there.
There are a lot of complicated ways to go about this but trust me work on channels first the great Joshua taught me how!
website
BLOG
FLICKR

Pentax: K20D; FA50mm 1.4; FA135mm 2.8; FA 17-28mm; FA 80-320mm; AF360FGZ
Sigma: 30mm F1.4EXDC; 10-20mmEXDC ..... LENSBABY 'Composer' ,

Lilly

Link Posted 09/11/2008 - 19:16
Unfortunately - Josh has deleted the pics now, but hope you get the gist, this is how I got going...

Josh's Tips for mono
website
BLOG
FLICKR

Pentax: K20D; FA50mm 1.4; FA135mm 2.8; FA 17-28mm; FA 80-320mm; AF360FGZ
Sigma: 30mm F1.4EXDC; 10-20mmEXDC ..... LENSBABY 'Composer' ,
Last Edited by Lilly on 09/11/2008 - 19:19

screwdriver

Link Posted 10/11/2008 - 22:26
You can do a lot with a B&W in PS. I hope you don't mind but I did a little 'tinkering' with your picture.




Once you've converted to B&W select part of the image say the sky with the Lasso Tool and feather lots, pull up a Levels Adjustment Layer and adjust the sliders, do the same for any other part of the image. You can also use a Curves Adjustment Layer and increase contrast on just the part of the picture selected. I added a glow to the water beyond the people, but I could only go so far with this small file.

If you shoot Raw and open as a 16bit file its amazing the detail you can extract.
Chris
Last Edited by screwdriver on 10/11/2008 - 22:30
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