Back Modifications (2)
Views: 89 (40 Unique)  Award Shortlist   

Black & White

By psu68    
Conversion of previous image..... all comments and critiques welcomed & thanks in advance for looking.

I am trying to add emotion to my images as describe in a recent seminar.

Tags: Black and white Landscape and travel

Take your photography to the next level and beyond...

  • NEWS

Why not join for free today?

Join for Free

Your total photography experience starts here

This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


taggart Plus
12 47 13 United States
11 Jan 2014 7:02PM
For emotions, I would prefer this to be in color--bright with sunshine, etc.

It is, however, a very fine conversion-- Well done!

Join ePHOTOzine for free and remove these adverts.

Jestertheclown 8 7.5k 249 England
11 Jan 2014 7:06PM
I'm not sure what's happened here.

How did you go about converting it?
psu68 4 1 2 United States
11 Jan 2014 8:50PM

Quote:I'm not sure what's happened here.

How did you go about converting it?

The original image is on the second page of my E portfolio entitled The Falls. It's a color image taken around sundown using an ND 40 filter and long exposure. This is a B&W conversion using LightZone open source software. I paid particular attention to the tool called ZoneMapper which divides your image into 16 grayscale
zones each differing by 1/2 f stop from the next. It allows you to adjust the brightness and contrast of your image, or each grayscale zone individually. It's just a matter of adjusting the image to your preference from there.
psu68 4 1 2 United States
11 Jan 2014 8:53PM

Quote:For emotions, I would prefer this to be in color--bright with sunshine, etc.

It is, however, a very fine conversion-- Well done!

Thanks Jenn - the original was in color - taken at sundown. (see the original on pg. 2 of my portfolio ("The Falls")

Jestertheclown 8 7.5k 249 England
11 Jan 2014 10:05PM
Thanks Art,
I've found your colour original.
I thought that this one had a look of HDR about it and I immediately thought the same about the coloured one.
From the sound of it ZoneMapper must emulate HDR/tone mapping.
As an alternative and it's possibly the most favoured way of converting to mono, I downloaded your colour version, applied a (modified) and fairly serious 'S' curve and increased vibrance quite significantly.
I then converted that to B/W using the channel mixer in Photoshop.
I've uploaded the result as a mod.
Hope this helps.


Edit: that mods. really become washed out and has lost all of its sharpness during the uploading process.
It's something that's happened to my mods. on here before and I don't really know why.
However, I'm afraid it's not much use to you, Art.
paulbroad 9 123 1161 United Kingdom
12 Jan 2014 9:10AM
Yes, the tones are wrong and particularly look strange in the sky. It doesn't work for me at all. Looked at Brens mod, but feel that needs rather more contrast and base density. This demands a well exposed colour image I feel.

Jestertheclown 8 7.5k 249 England
12 Jan 2014 2:09PM

Quote:Looked at Brens mod, but feel that needs rather more contrast and base density.


I don't know why my mod. turned out the way it has.
The version that I have here is much better. Proper black and white thresholds and much sharper.
I've had this happen to me before and I've absolutely no idea why.
pamelajean Plus
11 991 1922 United Kingdom
12 Jan 2014 3:23PM
I've looked at the original colour version, Art, and much prefer it.

My reasons are:-
It's more alive, it provides the emotion you are seeking. Mono is a good medium for enhancing emotional substance, but I don't think it works here.
The reflections are more obvious and allow the greens to sweep through the frame, starting from the trees at the top, through the water and into the foreground.
The colour in the rocks form a nice sweeping curve through the image, too.

I don't like the mono because:-
It is very stark and strong in tones, not conducive to a serene waterfall scene.
The clouds look like smoke.
Parts of the trees have become blurred.
A lot of the water in the fall has disappeared.
Although it has revealed more detail, especially the texture in the rocks, the softness of the original feels more right for the scene.

I have done a modification using your original.
I cropped to a square format, mainly to contain the important elements, but also to remove some of the reeds on the right side which were acting as a barrier to my view of the scene rather than simply framing the image.
I wanted to keep some of that large foreground rock on the left, but not as much as in the original.
I brightened the image, then adjusted highlights, shadows and Levels, also burnt in the water, and removed some blue.
The sky is burnt out top right, so I selected it and filled it with colour. The colour I picked from the sky, as it is, turned out far too grey and left the image looking dull and lifeless, so I chose a completely different and brighter blue, then extended a bit further to blend it in.

There’s no absolute right or wrong when it comes to choosing a subject for black and white, but I do find that there are some subjects and scenes that rely strongly on colour for their impact, and I think this is one of them.

psu68 4 1 2 United States
12 Jan 2014 4:06PM
Many thanks to Paul, Bren, and especially Pamela for taking the time to share their knowledge and insight and the modifications. I've learned a great deal thus far and have a long way to go before I am able to even see some of the points made. Very much appreciated !!!


Sign In

You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join For Free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.