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Archway to Carlisle cathedral.

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I am trying to make a monochrome print.
It was initially a colour pic,I desaturated it and used a sepia toner in PS. I am not entirely happy with the result.
I welcome any comments/suggestions to improve.

Camera:Canon EOS 20D
Lens:Sigma 24-60
Recording media:JPEG (digital)
Title:Archway to Carlisle cathedral.
Username:f8 f8
Uploaded:19 Mar 2010 - 4:34 PM
Tags:Architecture, Black & white, General
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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.
Mad4WDW
Mad4WDW  5 England
19 Mar 2010 - 4:36 PM

Just looks like it could use a bit more contrast to me, nice though

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Morgs
Morgs  6 Wales62 Constructive Critique Points
19 Mar 2010 - 4:58 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

The image looks a bit flat at the moment, so I would suggest you have a go at what I've just quickly done in photoshop.
The first thing that I did was totally desaturate the image as it appeared that part of the image was a sepia colour and other parts not. Then I would have a look at the levels if i were you. If you click on the alt key and click on the white slider or the black slider, you will get to see what areas of the image are completely burnt out and what is complete black.
I adjust the levels to give it a bit more bite.
Then to finish the image (and I've done this quickly) and you can take more time, is to selectively dodge and burn. Dodge the highlights at about 3% and burn the shadows at the same rate. Build up slowly looking at the before and after regularly to see the changes take place slowly.

I haven't commented on the composition as it seems to me that you wanted feedback on the monochrome style. Hope this all helps.

Dave

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f8
f8  109169 forum posts England22 Constructive Critique Points
19 Mar 2010 - 5:16 PM

Thankyou Dave, very helpful,I will try your suggestion.

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DRicherby
DRicherby  5269 forum posts United Kingdom725 Constructive Critique Points
19 Mar 2010 - 5:40 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

Desaturation is the easiest but worst way to produce a black and white photograph — it gives you no flexibility whatsoever in how colours are converted into shades of grey. Paint Shop Pro has a nice facility for doing black and white conversions by simulating different coloured filters at different strengths, which I usually find to be enough control — perhaps Photoshop has something similar?

If not, the most flexible way is to use the channel mixer. Again, it can be helpful to think in terms of filters: a red filter (100% red, 0% green, 0% blue) will turn pure red to white and pure blues/greens/cyans to black. 100% green and blue work in the corresponding ways and combinations of the red, green and blue channels blend the effects. So, for example, if you want to darken foliage, you'll want to blend mostly the red and blue channels; to lighten it, make the green channel dominate the blend.

The other thing that black and white needs is contrast. Use a curves adjustment layer to adjust the global contrast and, as Morgs suggests, dodge and burn to increase contrast locally. To my eye, sepia toning always seems to decrease the contrast apparent in an image so, if you're using it, it pays to push the contrast a bit further before toning.

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f8
f8  109169 forum posts England22 Constructive Critique Points
19 Mar 2010 - 6:32 PM

Thanks David for your comments and help,I will certainly try that.

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