Black and White Sunday

Prompt:  https://bopaula.wordpress.com/

I haven’t been doing this challenge much lately because I haven’t been having much success converting images from colour to black and white.   Most of images I tried came out dull and uninteresting – I think I had beginner’s luck with some of more successful images I created a year or so ago.  This luck had began to run out and I felt I needed to learn more about the technicalities of converting colour photos to B&W digitally.  I borrowed a book from the library –  “Advanced Digital Black and White Photography” by John Beardsworth.  It’s chock full of useful information and a lot of it is very technical.   I’ll record the processes I used here to give myself a record to refer back to. (hope you don’t find the technicalities too boring).

Being a great fan of Ansel Adams I decided to begin by following the directions for creating Adams style imagery.    A classic Adams shot involves rugged rocks and a blue sky with scattered clouds.   Looking through my archives I found this shot I took in Cappadocia that might be suitable for conversion.

DSCF8213

Working in Photoshop I created a new Black & White Adjustment Layer.  I chose the Red Filter preset as a starting point and used the Sliders to adjust the various tint.   I then made a New Adjustment Layer – Curves and tweaked the contrast.  Here’s the final image –

                                      b & w

Here’s some more Cappadocia photos that I processed the same way.  I read that Ansel Adams spent a lot of time in the darkroom and liked to use dodging and burning to create contrast.   When I had flattened the images below I used the Dodge and Burn Tools.

DSCF8470

                DSCF8373 b&w

This is the kind of processing I could do for hours and still not be 100% happy with the results.     I’ll keep playing and experimenting.  I’d love to know what you think or if you have any tips you want to share.  Smile

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17 thoughts on “Black and White Sunday

  1. I also like his work 🙂 I have seen many pictures of Cappadocia, but I could hardly recognize it from your photos. The last one makes them look like some mythical structures and not like erosion pyramids that they are. I like the processing you’ve applied on your “love valley sculptures” 😉

    1. I felt like I was walking through a mythical landscape while I was there. Processing my photos from there in something I return to again and again.

  2. The real trick, of course, is “think in black and white” ie at the point of capture. Not all images are suitable for B&W capture….you are looking for tone, texture, form, shape. Your last Cappadocia image is good 😀

    1. Thanks so much for that Sue. I really appreciate it. Training my mind to think in terms of black and white images becomes a little easier when I apply the knowledge you’ve given me here. 🙂

  3. No tips, just awe and fascination. I’d like to see the originals of the last two, so I can scrutinise your artistry at work! You’ve certainly got moody mistressed. I’ve saved this post for its references and challenges – to play with later.

    1. Thanks for that. I can’t figure out how to post an image in the comment thread but I’ll make sure to post the originals in further posts about photo processing. I’m a bit fixated on it at present so there will be more posts. I hope you can make sense of my very brief notes on my process. You could email me if you want more information. 🙂

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