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Thread: Advice needed to convert colour to b&w

  1. #1

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    Audrey Olsen

    Advice needed to convert colour to b&w

    I've been experimenting with converting a colour image to B&W and so far have not liked my results. I would like opinions on what is the best way to accomplish this please. I am using PSE 10. Thanks in advance.

    Cheers, Audrey

  2. #2
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    John

    Re: Advice needed to convert colour to b&w

    If you get a chance get your hands on Scott Kelby's "Photoshop Elements book".
    In answer to your question:
    Do all of your post processing beforehand. In Camera Raw, move the saturation slider all the way to the left. Then move the clarity slider to the right until you get the look you like. Then try some more post processing using the contrast, brightness sliders and for an added push-try changing the white balance.

    All of these suggestions come courtesy of Scott Kelby.

  3. #3

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    Lennart Elg

    Re: Advice needed to convert colour to b&w

    The "best" way depends a lot on the image you wish to convert. Can you show us a couple of examples, and try to express what it is you donīt like?

    You will need to replace changes in colour with changes in the light/dark dimension, so you need to control how different colors convert (I use CS4 so I am not sure what tools you have available in Elements). Most photos also benefit from an overall increase in contrast when I convert them to b/w.

  4. #4
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: Advice needed to convert colour to b&w

    Audrey

    This is one of those questions that invites the response, 'There are many ways to skin a cat'.

    PSE10 will certainly allow you to make high quality B & Ws.

    One of the best places to start would be with the tutorial here on CiC. That will give you a good starting point for exploring the world of B & W. My own personal recommendation in terms of then advancing your learning, would be Michael Freeman's 'The Complete Guide to Black & White Digital Photography', 2009, Ilex. It remains my bible, so no apologies for continuing to reference it.

    In terms of software, PSE10 will certainly allow you to make high quality B & W, as will many other packages. A great many people who are really in to B & W use Nik Software's Silver Efex Pro (SEP). SEP2 was recently launched, but some people have been having trouble running it on their computers. You can download a trial version and test it out before making any commitment to buy.

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