Black And White The Digital Way

best black and white pictures Black And White The Digital Way

best black and white pictures Black And White The Digital Way

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The tools to create it are the same either way these tools however are many and can be confusing if youre approaching photoshop or any post processing
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To lighten the photo, I adjusted the center value and increased it to 1.20. The original value was 1.0. Too darken the photo, decrease the center number. To lighten, increase the center number.

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Snow Fall Not rated yetHi This picture was taken while it was snowing heavily. I wanted to cover the lake flowing and big tress without leaves. Just wanted to show the …

With the proliferation of digital photography, people have now started to look at ways to recreate what film has done for them, including recreating a black and white photo.

cricket Not rated yet I was wandering in the neighbourhood park when I saw these lads enjoying a game of tennis ball cricket in the soft sun heralding the onset of winters. …

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time Not rated yetThings can be faded with time but knowledge is timeless!

“I am a swan!” Not rated yetThis autumn photo of swans was originally in colour and taken with my new Pentax K100D Super Digital SLR, set on Program Automatic Exposure mode at 1536 …

Using iPhoto or Google’s Picasa or Photoshop Elements. With in several of these tools, and even in the professional Photoshop products, there are built-in black and white filters. The benefits to these are they make creating a black and white photo as simple as one click. Granted some of the filters work better than others, but for the most part do a decent job.

Reselect the top channel to make all the color channels visible again and you are done.

It’s World Wide Web! I was at the Pana`ewa Rainforest Zoo & Gardens in Hilo yesterday, and came across this spider with it’s web. The morning sun seemed to be hitting it just …

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How to convert using the Channel Mixer First, open your photo and then add a Channel Mixer adjustment layer.

If the photo is too dark, add an Levels Adjustment layer and lighten the photo.

There are numerous ways to make a digital black and white, some include:

360 Flip Down 3 Set Not rated yetWent out all day shooting with my mate and my new camara. Didn’t have my Opteka fish eye so I had to stay quite distanced from the subject to maintain …

Lonely Sheep This is another of my Cutallosa Farm series. I hope you like this as much as you did “The Beauty of Curallosa Farm.” I’ve done many different …

Peoples Calvary Not rated yet”Kalbaryo ng Sambayanan” through Juan dela Cruz as the modern Christ carrying a crucifix of price hikes, unemployment, privatization and deregulation. …

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Adjust the percentages until the photo looks good, don’t worry about great, we’ll get to that in a moment. You can also adjust the constant percentage to lighten or darken the photo. In this case I darkened the photo by setting the constant to -2%.

Select the Green Channel and paste either through the menu or Ctrl-V or Cmd-V.

Also check out our previous Black and White Photography Tips.

ah-tension just an average pic , run through picasa cropped and sent to B/W

Nature’s Dark Side Not rated yetThis photo was shot on a warm November day. The actual picture has some nice red, brown, and green color to it, but the cloudy sky just didn’t do it for …

This process has become a personal favorite of mine. It is rather simple, but does require the use of a robust post-processing application, such as Photoshop CS.

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The Silent Scream Not rated yetPhoto of a cool looking sculpture called “The Ferryman” which was on public display here in Dublin City Centre. It was made of about 80% steel and …

Old Henry’s Farmstead Not rated yetBeautiful Farmstead in Victoria BC When I first saw this submission I thought there’s a touch of Ansel Adams here. The things that gives it that …

When I have used this method before, I usually start with the following settings:

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As part of our series of posts on Black and White Photography the following tip on converting images from color to black and white was submitted by DPS reader – Frank Lazaro. You can see his photography at his Flickr page.

Select all by either going to the menu Edit>Select All or Ctrl-A or Cmd-A and copy the selection either through the menu or Ctrl-C or Cmd-C. Then convert back to RGB Mode, go to the menu Mode>RGB.

There is absolutely no right way to convert a digital photo to black and white. I have barely touch the surface in terms of how to and what kinds of software allow you to create a black and white photo. There are numerous plug-ins, methods, applications etc not mentioned here – but no one way is perfect. In the end, do what looks and works best for you and your photos. Enjoy.

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This method, in my opinion, leaves the photo looking flat. This is another simple method. Open the file you want to convert and add an Adjust layer. Click on Hue/Saturation. On the Dialog box, decrease the saturation value to -100%. Click Ok and you are done.

Profile of a daisy Not rated yetThis shot was taken in macro setting one afternoon when I was sitting in my car… I had just bought the very small plant of miniature daisies. I …

If for you feel the photo looks flat, you can use the duplicate layer method mentioned above. Just duplicate the main layer twice and follow these steps above.

Morning Fern Not rated yetI love it when the sun back lights subjects, especially plants and flowers. I took this shot of a back lit fern when the morning dew was at its best …

Droplets This was a photo taken in my garden of flowers still wet from the rains. I then played with the photo with my photo software and came up with this. …

I’ll cover several here. Please note, when I refer to Photoshop, I am using the generic term to mean using any photo editing tool with similar feature, such as Gimp or Photoshop Elements. There are also numerous plug-ins for Photoshop that will convert to Black and White as well. It is not possible; or rather I do not have the time to go over each one, so I will cover the ones that are the most popular in my opinion.

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Self Portrait Well, it was shot in the afternoon. I use the standard capture method with the macro approach. And then PS retouches the b/w.

There is a common misconception though with this technique – the RGB percentages must equal 100%. The truth is they do not need to equal 100%, they can actually equal whatever you want them to be, since the main goal is to make sure the photo looks the way you want it to look.

Summer Not rated yetTook this by the beach the other day. Curious to what you guys might think of it… Personally, I rather like it! In black and white photography …

Villa Capri Not rated yetMy daughter on mothers day! You know what I like about this photo? The blend of quiet angelic calm (your daughter) and what seems to be a raging storm! …

Select Monochrome and adjust the percentages for RGB. Again, I usually start with 70%, 30%, 5%.

Using Photoshop. Even within Photoshop there are multiple ways to create a black and white photo. I’ll only cover a handful of the popular methods, including my personal preferences.

Violinist In Training My Daughter is learning Violin and I wanted some beautiful pictures of her and her new instrument. This photo was taken in color and converted in Photoshop …

How to Convert Color Digital Images into Black and White Ones

Change the Screen Mode to Soft Light and reduce the opacity to something between 5% and 30% (personal preference).

From there I adjust the settings until the photo looks the way I want it to.

Change the Screen Mode to Color Burn and reduce the opacity to something between 5% and 15% (personal preference).

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Photographing people in black and white Photo was taken on Railroad tracks in Georgia, I was not going for a special look, really just playing around with my Canon Rebel, this is exactly how …

Covered Not rated yetThis was taken at a Natural Resource Center(fancy name for park) in North-eastern Maryland. When I came upon this after a walk on an early fall morning …

Girlfriend’s sister Not rated yetTaken at an old abandoned shack on River Road outside of Baton Rouge in the mid 1970s. All natural light, late in the afternoon. Hasselblad camera with …

Passion Went to a friends boxing match. Took this shot and loved it. Good strong black and white composition here; and looks like good strong boxers too! …

Amsterdam Not rated yetI was on a trip with my best friends after exhausting exams. I’ve always been fascinated by Amsterdam’s beautiful architecture and took this possibility …

Open the file you want to convert and add an Adjust layer. Click on Gradient Map. On the Dialog box, click on the pull down menu and select Black and White. Click Ok and you are done.

Pros: Easy, simple and does not require any knowledge or post processing to create a black and white photo. Cons: Limits the contrast and dynamic range of the photos. In my personal experience, leaves the photo looking washed out or flat.

Water Street Not rated yetThis picture was taken on a VERY cold day in Peterborough, Ontario. As I was running back to the car before I permanently lost my fingertips, I took …

Do you have a black and white photo lurking on your hard drive that you are particularly proud of? Share it with the world!Use the form below to upload your photo, and tell us a little something about it.Where was the photo taken? Was there any special “look” you were going for? Did you do any image editing? (or is it exactly how it came out of the camera?)Tell us anything you like, it’s your photo, after all!

Tas Wood Seller Not rated yetThis photo was taken at Kota Kinabalu Crafts Market located in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. Tas wood is traditionally used to keep venomous animals …

2. Post Processing – There are various methods in creating a black and white in a post processing environment.

Newborn Not rated yet Learn powerful photography techniques! I am obsessed with black and white pictures and tried to make this photo black and white by using adobe photo …

A Bridge too Far? Not rated yetI initially took this in colour with the intention of converting it to black and white later. I used PSE 7 with Elements+ for this with selective levels, …

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The Kitten is having trouble climbing down. Not rated yetI took a shot of my kitten having trouble getting down after climbing very high in that tree! Then I used black and white effects as I read the tips …

1. In camera filter – By changing a setting in the camera menu to take a black and white photo. Essentially this is a built-in color de-saturation method that removes the color information after the camera takes the picture. I won’t be covering this method in this article.

The more popular way to convert a photo into black and white is using the Channel Mixer.

majesty Hello everyone, I took that photo a few years ago at my parents house on a sunny summer day. That dove/pigeon was a very good model! It was taken …

retired Not rated yetI found this barn while travelling the back roads of the county in which I live. Looking at the photo, I wonder – what has this barn seen in its lifespan? …

chevrolet 1950 Classic car exhibition in Mexicali, Baja California, México

I don’t use this method all that much, but it is a pretty simple process.

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UPDATE: Learn more about Black and White Photography with our new Essential Guide to Black and White Photography.

Are you crazy? Not rated yetThis photo taken in color and converted to black and white through corel paint shop pro X2. Three year old looking down at a bug when I asked her to …

Click the button and find it on your computer. Then select it.

Reflection series 1 Picture of lady drawn on wall inside shop, reflection of brick wall behind me. I like this submission. The pure blacks and the bright whites are just …

happy goodyear  It’s a shame Graziano didn’t tell us anything about this photo – but I had to include it as I just love it! The perspective here is great. Graziano …

Church of St. Emillion, France Not rated yetI decided to share this photograph with the other users of the site because it’s my first effort at producing a “black & white” image from a colour original, …

Go back to the Channel Window and select the Red channel. Paste either through the menu or Ctrl-V or Cmd-V.

Select the Blue Channel and paste either through the menu or Ctrl-V or Cmd-V.

“The Orchid & The Ant” This photo was taken on the grounds of the Ola’a First Hawaiian Church in Kurtistown on the big island of Hawaii. I thought the wild Chinese Orchid …

No haven’t visited Egypt…yet ! Hello all! I am Kaustub, from Mumbai India. The photo which I`ve submitted is a decorative piece used for a party at a friend`s house. I clicked …

One thing I find useful is at the end to add a contrast layer, this will darken the darks and lighten the white. This is optional step.

From the channel window (if it is not open, go to Windows>Channels) and select the Lightness Channel.

Bryanne Not rated yetModel photography is something new to me but when the opportunity arose I gave it a bash. I never used the conventional umbrella flashes and stuff as I …

Highway Junction A junction of two highways that drive along to get to my relatives’ house. The deep blue sky and the lone cluster of cumulus clouds, along with the …

Grass I took this photo while taking my dog for a walk… this was my first attempt at photography that wasn’t a snap shot… Now who would have thought …

Birds Not rated yet Learn powerful photography techniques! Occasionally, I like to go to a local garden with ponds and ducks and find the white ducks ideal for black …

Now, duplicate that layer twice. If you flatten the photo, just drag the layer to the Create a New Layer Icon on the Layers window. If you prefer to not flatten, you’ll need to duplicate both the above layers. The easiest way to do this is by selecting both the adjustment layer and the photo and dragging them to the Create a New Layer Icon on the Layers window.

walking the path Not rated yetI have worked with these kids in a number of shoots. This shot is one of the first ones that I ever took of them and to date is still my favorite. …

Maui Sunrise I took this picture in at Haleakala Crater. I did take the picture in color and converted it to B&W, but this is the only editing that I have done. …

Horse Feathers I took this shot with my old Petri SLR35 at a parade, not digital or edited but still curious what you think. Personally, I think it’s very good! …

Top quality black and white digital photography It should be easy to get good black and white digital photography from a modern digital camera. After all, most come with a black and white mode to enable instant black and white photography.

But my advice – steer clear of any of those special camera modes!I’ll show you why . . . roll your mouse over the photographs below (one was converted by the greyscale method, the other by using the “channel mixer”).

If you would like your black and white digital photography to look more like the second photo, rather than the lifeless greyscale of the first photo, then read on. Show us YOUR black and white pictures! Submit your black and white photos, and share them with the world! Submit your photo and we (and other visitors to the site) will be able to admire your original photography.

It will also give some ‘black and white’ ideas to others – and you’ll be able to pick up some ideas from those who have already contributed too! NB: any comments your photo(s) receive are screened before being posted on this site Click to submit your photo! Click to see submissions to date Click to browse the submission archive Before you get stuck into your black and white digital photography you might want to have a look at my black and white photography tip #1 which goes through a few basics on what sort of scenes work best for black and white digital photography, and what might be best avoided! Greyscale vs true black and white digital photography The photographs above are of Hong Kong at night (great place to visit by the way, highly recommended!).

The first image is in greyscale. It looks lifeless compared to the punchy black and white of the second image. To create top quality black and white digital photos like this I have used the channel mixer function in Photoshop.

Your camera software To start with your camera though. It probably came with some photo editing software. You might have your own software – perhaps Photoshop, Photo Impact, Photo Studio – or any one of a dozen or so programs that have “photo” somewhere in the title! Any of these will do a better job at black and white digital photography than your camera will.

Think of it this way – your camera is specially designed to capture photographs. Your software is specially designed to edit photographs. Don’t ask your camera to do a job that your software is designed to do – it’s not what it was made for! And now for the science bit! To explain in a little more detail:Light is made up of many colours – think back to rainbows, prisms and “Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain” at school.

NB: for the interested, the first letter of each word in the Richard . . . phrase represents the colours of the rainbow in order. R = red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet.When you capture an image with your digital camera the lens focuses light onto the image sensor.

The sensor is made up of millions of light sensitive dots. These are called “photosites” – just think of them as individual dots. Look at my pages on digital photography printing and Digital photography printing – understanding resolution for more on this.

Your sensor records three types of light – red, green and blue (RGB). It records the strength of each of these from a scale of 000-255. So, a photosite might have a reading of: Red – 212 Green – 028 Blue – 056 The strength of each colour is combined to get an overall colour for that dot.

In this case, because red is the strongest colour, this will give us a reddish coloured dot. NB: If all three were 000 that would be pure black, and if they were all 255 the result would be pure white.

And the maths part . . . Now, think about all the information you have there. Three colours, with 256 possible strengths of colour. 256 x 256 x 256 = 16,777,216Wow! Each dot can represent any one of over 16 million colours.

That’s a lot of colours!So what happens of you set your camera to black and white digital photography mode? It throws away all of those colours and simply records the strength of light at that pixel – on a scale of 000 – 256.

000 = pure black 255 = pure whiteanything in the middle is grey.This is the main reason why I implore you to not set your camera to black and white mode. If you do you are asking your digital camera, that is capable of recording any one of over 16 million combinations to choose from just 256 of them.

You’re basically throwing away information that you might just need later on. Still not convinced? More reasons? You may well decide later on that, actually, that picture might look better in colour. If your camera never recorded the colour information when it took the photograph (i.

e. it was set to black and white digital photography mode) you can’t put the information back later on. It’s gone for good. If you decide to go for a black and white photograph anyway, then your software is more than capable of throwing away that information.

At least you’ll have the choice.But wait! There’s more. Even if you have taken your full colour snap and decided that it suits black and white digital photography, tread carefully. There are ways to make your black and white digital photography really stand out, and then there’s greyscale again.

Go back to the two images at the top of this page to remind yourself why.To create top quality black and white digital photos like these you need to use your photo editing software with a little care.

I have used the channel mixer function in Photoshop.Click for more on how to use Photoshop to produce the best black and white digital photography.Further reading . . . Now you have an understanding of black and white digital photography, you might find the following pages worth a read: Glossary of digital photography B & W photography Tip#1 Photoshop B & W Tutorial Digital Photography Secrets ebook review – even more photography tips! digital-photography-tips.

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Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page…

Highway Not rated yetA junction of two highways that drive along to get to my relatives’ house. The deep blue sky and the lone cluster of cumulus clouds, along with the …

The witness Not rated yetThis is a picture I have taken over the hill top on the bank of river Karnaphuli situated in Chittagong, Bangladesh. The building was built by the …

Now you’ve read this tutorial – give it a go and post your results in the Black and White assignment in our forums.

Pros: Simple one step process to create a black and white photo Cons: Requires the purchase or installing of additional software. Quality is hit or miss

The Old Eight Bells Walking around my local town trying out my new camera I noticed the town contained a lot of old an interesting architecture. I shot this in colour …

Now the Photo should have more depth and not look as flat. You can adjust each of these layers based on the photo of your personal taste.

Black And White The Digital Way