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Thread: Color within B/W

  1. #1
    Digital's Avatar
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    Color within B/W

    I was playing around with Lightroom, and came up with this pic. No, I do not think I invented the wheel. This has been done before.
    Would very much appreciate C&C. Bruce

    Color within B/W

  2. #2
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    Re: Color within B/W

    I am not a fan of selective colorization but, this seems to work...

  3. #3
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    I am not a fan of selective colorization but, this seems to work...
    Thank you Richard for your comments. Bruce

  4. #4

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    Re: Color within B/W

    What do you intend the subject to be? If it's the shirt, it works. If it's the person, probably not.

  5. #5
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    What do you intend the subject to be? If it's the shirt, it works. If it's the person, probably not.
    Mike: Thanks for you comment; I will have to mull your point over. Bruce

  6. #6
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Bruce, I'm going to agree with Mike. Unfortunately, since it's the only thing in shining bright colour, it's where my eye is drawn. Another big downside not mentioned by Mike or Richard is that since the gentleman's shirt is pale blue, it seems to tint his skin as well. I'm not a huge fan of gray-blue skin tones.

    Of course this is just an optical illusion, but still, he looks like he may need a stiff shot of whiskey to snap him out of it!

  7. #7
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Thank you Andrew. This pic is not a favorite in the series of photos I took of this subject. I was playing around with colorization in LR4, and this is what I came up with. Thought I would see what the rest of the world thought of it.
    Knowing this person as I do (co-worker) a good shot of whiskey would help. Bruce

  8. #8
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Quote Originally Posted by Digital View Post
    Knowing this person as I do (co-worker) a good shot of whiskey would help. Bruce

  9. #9
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Bruce, it just occurred to me that you converted this picture in LR4, as you mentioned. The only way I can think to selectively colour something in Light Room is to de-saturate all of the other colours.

    If this is how you did it, can I suggest against it? I take back that the dead skin tones are an optical illusion caused by the blue shirt being so prominent. I think it may be because you've turned down all of the reds, and yellows, which will leave the skin (not only colourless, as you've done here), but also quite lackluster in appearance.

    If I'm wrong, I'd like to know how you did it, cause I'm racking my brain trying to think of another way to do it in LR!!!!

    What most people will do for this type of application is open it into a software that can handle layers, such as CS6, or Elements, or Gimp, and create a second layer, convert one into B+W, then stack the layers, and erase which bits you want in colour.

    That way, you have not altered any of the other colour channels, even for portions of the photo that will remain in B+W.

  10. #10
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Andrew, in order to get the effect that I posted I de-saturated all the colors under saturation (HSL) with the exception of blue.
    On this second pic I desasturated all the colors in HSL (saturation), and used the Brush with the saturation set at 100, and painted in the blue color. If you notice there is a bit of color over the subject's left shoulder (as you view the pic). I may have not used a small enough brush stroke. Also the blue highlights in the first pic are gone. Bruce


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    Color within B/W
    Last edited by Digital; 15th February 2013 at 05:23 AM.

  11. #11

    Re: Color within B/W

    Most photographers hate selective colour as an overused/pointless effect. Most civilians don't hate is as much as we would like them to. In fact many like it. However, you need to realise that the colour is where the focus is going to be.

    In a portrait the important subject is the person and adding selective colour to just a shirt is going to highlight the clothing and distract from the real subject. Of course if you were photographing a group of colourfully garbed individuals you might actually want to focus on the clothes rather than the people. As the author Ted Grant said “When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in black and white, you photograph their souls!”

    I've only done selective colour once. It was pretty much the first time I took my camera out for a day shooting. I wasn't so keen but my pals liked it. I think that if it works at all it is because the people aren't really the focus - the focus is that they are relaxing having a drink, so selective colour on the drink works.

    Color within B/W

  12. #12
    Digital's Avatar
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    Re: Color within B/W

    Dan: I rarely use selective coloring. I thought that I would throw this pic out, and see what happened. In you particular photo it worked. In mine it did not. Bruce

  13. #13
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    Re: Color within B/W

    I was asked to do this by a client before.

    The customer is always right, after all.

    They wanted their 4 month baby to be in monochrome on a bright pink fluffy rug.

    I had to politely point out that their gorgeous daughter would in fact look quite cold and dead.

    Like the man in this thread

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