Definitive Color to B&W Digital Techniques?

Discussion in 'Graphics Programs and Photo Gallery' started by bradracino, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. bradracino

    bradracino TPF Noob!

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    I'm trying to find a list of techniques or sites that give really good processes of converting color to B&W digital photos. I've tried a variety of techniques over the years but I haven't come across one technique that i've loved enough to stick with for all my conversions. Any recommendations?

    Thanks all.
     
  2. skieur

    skieur TPF Noob!

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    Nik Software as in www.niksoftware.com has some good software filters and a conversion program that perfectly fits the bill in that the challenge is to create a broad range of tones on the grey scale of a B & W.

    skieur
     
  3. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    I use Nik Software's Silver Efex Pro and can recommend it.
    You can even select a film 'type' to mimic, although how close they are to the gelatin films they purport to emulate is open to question.
    It works as a plug-in for both Aperture and for Photoshop.
    You can download a trial version from their website.

    Tiffen do a digital filter suite that I think includes B&W conversion.

    You can achieve good conversions using Photoshop or any image processing software but it can be time consuming.
    A dedicated plug-in makes life so much easier.
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I'd be amazed if such a thing existed. I used different films, developers, techniques, papers, etc... in my BW darkroom; it's the same for me in Photoshop.

    Here are my favorite digital processing links though

    http://www.ronbigelow.com/articles/articles.htm

    http://www.clarkvision.com/photoinfo/index.html

    http://www.normankoren.com/#Tutorials

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials.htm

    http://www.adobe.com/digitalimag/ps_pro_primers.html

    http://www.naturescapes.net/home.htm

    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/

    http://www.earthboundlight.com/phototip-archives.html

    http://av.adobe.com/russellbrown/ColortoBW.mov
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2008
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I use an action made by Wally. I believe he used to be a member here, but he's made the rounds on the internet photo forums.
     
  6. pm63

    pm63 TPF Noob!

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    Photoshops Ctrl+Shift+Alt+B has always worked well for me, as it allows to you control the brightness of each individual colour as a tone in the B&W. I shoot mainly landscapes, so darkening those skies for punch is essential.
     
  7. reg

    reg TPF Noob!

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    You're never going to.

    The easiest advice is desaturate then adjust curves, or Ctrl+shft+alt+B. I don't know what that's a shortcut for, but I'm sure it's something along those lines, an adjustable desaturation.

    There is no "one size fits all" because photos are DIFFERENT.
     
  8. Helen B

    Helen B TPF Noob!

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    Here's a short thread about conversions, with a link to a tutorial written by a TPF member: link.

    Best,
    Helen
     

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