Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: black and white on the street

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    black and white on the street

    I have been reading various project 52's and came across some advice from Geoff F about converting to black and white which I immediately tried. I was really quite surprised at the difference between the numbers for RGB I learnt on my course and Geoffs as were the conversion of my pictures. I dont know which one I prefer if any!

    R=30 G=60 B=10
    black and white on the street

    R=200 G=-50 B=-50
    black and white on the street

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,982
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: black and white on the street

    Julia

    Which one do you think better captures the atmosphere that you wanted to convey when you took the photograph? They, are of course, completely different images because you have cropped them differently, but which of the two in terms of the tones, best captures your experience of being in that place at that time?

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    Re: black and white on the street

    Originally I was focusing on the building. However I submitted the second one on my project 52 but I preferred to focus on the people and activity. With the 1st one I was purely looking at the technique of the conversion having read Geoff's piece. I think I am looking at technical issues here as I feel I never achieve what I want from a black and white conversion.

  4. #4
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,982
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: black and white on the street

    Quote Originally Posted by juliac View Post
    ...I feel I never achieve what I want from a black and white conversion.
    What is it you feel you do not achieve? What have you seen in B & W images from other people that you think you're not achieving?

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Devon, UK
    Posts
    11,713

    Re: black and white on the street

    There isn't any one formula, Julia, just rough starting points.

    One thing to remember is that green has most image information (more green sensors) while blue has most noise, very roughly speaking.

    I tend to think along the lines of green for details, red for texture and blue for brightness.

    Also remember that you can still add a Curves layer to your layer stack; and a hue/sat layer with the hue adjusted to whatever is required can prove useful at times.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    Re: black and white on the street

    Thanks that is very useful. In terms of the black and white conversions which one of the two above is better in your opinion. The 1st has less contrast between the black and white but in the 2nd, although the crop is closer the people are sharper. Maybe there is a third alternative!!

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Nottingham.UK
    Posts
    409
    Real Name
    Martyn

    Re: black and white on the street

    at the end of the day your photo has to mean something, it either preserves history or displays a story, typical example is how we look back on an olden days pic of a high st, the photographer probably thought that they were stupid for taking a pic of a 1920's street scene,cheers martyn

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    Re: black and white on the street

    I totally agree with you and that is what Donald also asked but there must be technical issues as well that enhance or detract from a picture like all art forms and it when you have mastered some or all of these techniques that you can think about what your photo is reflecting.

  9. #9
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,982
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: black and white on the street

    Quote Originally Posted by juliac View Post
    but there must be technical issues as well that enhance or detract from a picture like all art forms and it when you have mastered some or all of these techniques that you can think about what your photo is reflecting.
    Julia

    For me there are two things - Composition and Exposure. Those are the things you need to concentrate on. And then the interpretation of the scene that you have captured is for you to decide.

    Exposure is the one 'technical' thing you have to get right. Composition is part of the process of artistic interpretation. How you then process the photograph to make the final image is the other part of the artistic interpretation.

    The 'technical' challenges are in knowing your camera and the lenses you are using, so that you get the best out of them. And knowing the software that you are using to make it work to your best advantage. Beyond that, so far as I am concerned, it is about you, as opposed to some technical set of 'rules'.

    So, I do think that, in your questions, you are maybe searching for 'technical' challenges and issues that do not exist.

    I would respectively suggest that allied to this is the task of building up of self-confidence and being able to trust your own judgement. It is part of our psychological make-up nowadays that we are programmed to want to know what is 'right' or 'wrong'. Sometimes there is no 'right' or 'wrong'. Instead, there is, 'This feels good' or 'This does not feel so good'.

    And on the two versions of the image that you posted above, this is the only question I asked myself - 'Which one feels good?' And that is why I asked - Which one do you prefer?
    Last edited by Donald; 3rd June 2012 at 07:02 AM.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    Re: black and white on the street

    Thanks and I will take this on board
    Julia

  11. #11

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Devon, UK
    Posts
    11,713

    Re: black and white on the street

    Quote Originally Posted by juliac View Post
    Thanks that is very useful. In terms of the black and white conversions which one of the two above is better in your opinion. The 1st has less contrast between the black and white but in the 2nd, although the crop is closer the people are sharper. Maybe there is a third alternative!!
    OK, here is a very quick third alternative. Merely the first image plus a little bit of Curves on the highlights. It would take a little bit more but a few areas are starting to overexpose so they would need the use of a mask on the Curves layer to selectively limit the Curves effect.

    black and white on the street

    With the second conversion, the people appear sharper because there is more contrast between the highlights and shadows.

  12. #12

    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Norfolk UK
    Posts
    59
    Real Name
    Julia Crockatt

    Re: black and white on the street

    Geoff - Curves is the answer I have been looking for. It has made all the difference. I knew there was 3rd option! Thanks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •