Whats a good *free* plugin or tutorial for converting colo..

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I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at the
local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and White.
Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other people
(whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look muddy.

Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
white and have good tone values.

I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned tutorials
to guide me through it.

Thanks,
 
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GamePlayer No. 1058 <nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote:

> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at
> the local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and
> White. Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other
> people (whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look
> muddy.
>
> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
> white and have good tone values.
>
> I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
> layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned
> tutorials to guide me through it.

Here's my favorite way to do it in Photoshop (I have Elements 2, but
most other versions should work, too):

Open a photo in PS. Add an adjustment layer for levels. Leave it alone
for now (just click OK). Add an adjustment level for hue/saturation.
Turn saturation down to -100 and leave the rest of the sliders alone.
This will make the image monochrome.

Now go back to the levels adjustment layer (double-click on it to get
the level adjustment dialog) and change the gamma for the different
colors (R, G, and B). Play around with them. This is where you can
really tweak whatever problems you're having with 'muddiness.'

The benefit of this is that it's completely undoable and reversible. If
you find a setting you like and want to keep it, you can just make it
invisible and add another levels adjustment layer for further tweaking.
 
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"GamePlayer No. 1058" <nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote
> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at
> the local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and
> White. snip
> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
> white and have good tone values.

Try the free Virtual Photography plug-in from optikVerve Labs
http://www.optikvervelabs.com/ . It offers a variety of black and white
conversion options that I have found most useful.
 
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"Paul Mitchum" <usenet@mile23.c0m> wrote in message
news:1gtkt74.n1mswfu0ioxpN%usenet@mile23.c0m...
> GamePlayer No. 1058 <nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at
>> the local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and
>> White. Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other
>> people (whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look
>> muddy.
>>
>> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
>> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black
>> and
>> white and have good tone values.
>>
>> I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
>> layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned
>> tutorials to guide me through it.
>
> Here's my favorite way to do it in Photoshop (I have Elements 2, but
> most other versions should work, too):
>
> Open a photo in PS. Add an adjustment layer for levels. Leave it alone
> for now (just click OK). Add an adjustment level for hue/saturation.
> Turn saturation down to -100 and leave the rest of the sliders alone.
> This will make the image monochrome.
>
> Now go back to the levels adjustment layer (double-click on it to get
> the level adjustment dialog) and change the gamma for the different
> colors (R, G, and B). Play around with them. This is where you can
> really tweak whatever problems you're having with 'muddiness.'
>
> The benefit of this is that it's completely undoable and reversible. If
> you find a setting you like and want to keep it, you can just make it
> invisible and add another levels adjustment layer for further tweaking.

What a great tip! I just tried it and it works wonderfully.

Thanks for posting it.
 
G

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On Thu, 17 Mar 2005 23:29:53 GMT, GamePlayer No. 1058
<nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote:
> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at the
> local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and White.
> Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other people
> (whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look muddy.

How about posting some of your efforts so we can see for ourselves?

How have you been doing it?

> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
> white and have good tone values.

I've looked into the same question, and there are a LOT of methods.
One really simple one is to convert to LAB color, then throw out the
A and B channels.

Another is to use the Channel Mixer with monochrome output. Here,
you choose which channel(s) to use. I recommend emphasizing the
green channel.

Afterwards, play with levels or contrast or curves to bring up the
contrast. Pay close attention to the histogram, so as not to clip
highlights or shadows -- or at least so that when you do clip, you
do so advisedly.

Here are a few images I've made this way:

http://narcissus.net/hoopy-plus-10-mid-1.06.jpg
http://narcissus.net/gulp.jpg
http://narcissus.net/BAM.jpg

In the end, the best images all seem to come from experimentation
and unique adjustments ... but I'm hoping that as I get better at
this, I'll find repeatable procedures for good results.

Regards,

--
Ben Rosengart (212) 741-4400 x215
Sometimes it only makes sense to focus our attention on those
questions that are equal parts trivial and intriguing.
--Josh Micah Marshall
 
G

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"GamePlayer No. 1058" <nospamreader@yahoo.com> writes:

> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at the
> local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and White.
> Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other people
> (whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look muddy.
>
> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
> white and have good tone values.
>
> I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
> layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned tutorials
> to guide me through it.

I get best results using the channel mixer in photoshop. Select
monochrome mode, and then make whatever combination you think works
well for that picture (which is to say, you're essentially playing
with color filters over the lens on B&W film after the fact). For
portraits, I find emphasizing the red channel at 50% or higher is
often productive.
--
David Dyer-Bennet, <mailto:dd-b@dd-b.net>, <http://www.dd-b.net/dd-b/>
RKBA: <http://noguns-nomoney.com/> <http://www.dd-b.net/carry/>
Pics: <http://dd-b.lighthunters.net/> <http://www.dd-b.net/dd-b/SnapshotAlbum/>
Dragaera/Steven Brust: <http://dragaera.info/>
 
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Paul, this is a great tip (for those of us using Photoshop Elements)!
I find using a slightly different trick does the same, even a bit more
sensitively:
add an adjustment layer for hue/saturation and leave it alone for now;
then add adjustment layer for hue/saturation (call it b&w), turn saturation
down to -100;
go back to first hue/sat layer, select "color" in menu window, double click,
select one of the colors and play around with its hue.
if you do not see anything happening, try again with the two layers made in
reverse order (I have to try this again and again, can't remember).
For portraits it works for me with red at about -20 or -30, then shift
yellow a bit. "best" settings probably depends on a lot of things (lighting
type, camera, iso etc)
lots of fun, rob
some of my pictures treated like this can be seen on (studio 2005)
www.robpolder.demon.nl


"Paul Mitchum" <usenet@mile23.c0m> schreef in bericht
news:1gtkt74.n1mswfu0ioxpN%usenet@mile23.c0m...
> GamePlayer No. 1058 <nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>> I'm currently working on my midterm project for my photography class at
>> the local Uni. Im trying to convert some color photos into Black and
>> White. Most of my efforts look okay to me, but upon critiques from other
>> people (whos work I admire and like), Im usually told the tones look
>> muddy.
>>
>> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
>> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black
>> and
>> white and have good tone values.
>>
>> I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
>> layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned
>> tutorials to guide me through it.
>
> Here's my favorite way to do it in Photoshop (I have Elements 2, but
> most other versions should work, too):
>
> Open a photo in PS. Add an adjustment layer for levels. Leave it alone
> for now (just click OK). Add an adjustment level for hue/saturation.
> Turn saturation down to -100 and leave the rest of the sliders alone.
> This will make the image monochrome.
>
> Now go back to the levels adjustment layer (double-click on it to get
> the level adjustment dialog) and change the gamma for the different
> colors (R, G, and B). Play around with them. This is where you can
> really tweak whatever problems you're having with 'muddiness.'
>
> The benefit of this is that it's completely undoable and reversible. If
> you find a setting you like and want to keep it, you can just make it
> invisible and add another levels adjustment layer for further tweaking.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

rob polder <robpolder@robpolder.demon.nl> wrote:

> "Paul Mitchum" <usenet@mile23.c0m> schreef in bericht
> news:1gtkt74.n1mswfu0ioxpN%usenet@mile23.c0m...
> > GamePlayer No. 1058 <nospamreader@yahoo.com> wrote:
[..]
> >> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> >> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black
> >> and white and have good tone values.
[..]
> >
> > Here's my favorite way to do it in Photoshop (I have Elements 2, but
> > most other versions should work, too):
> >
> > Open a photo in PS. Add an adjustment layer for levels. Leave it alone
> > for now (just click OK). Add an adjustment level for hue/saturation.
> > Turn saturation down to -100 and leave the rest of the sliders alone.
> > This will make the image monochrome.
> >
> > Now go back to the levels adjustment layer [..]
[..]
>
> Paul, this is a great tip (for those of us using Photoshop Elements)!
> I find using a slightly different trick does the same, even a bit more
> sensitively:
> add an adjustment layer for hue/saturation and leave it alone for now;
> then add adjustment layer for hue/saturation (call it b&w), turn saturation
> down to -100;
> go back to first hue/sat layer, select "color" in menu window, double click,
> select one of the colors and play around with its hue.
> if you do not see anything happening, try again with the two layers made in
> reverse order (I have to try this again and again, can't remember).
> For portraits it works for me with red at about -20 or -30, then shift
> yellow a bit. "best" settings probably depends on a lot of things (lighting
> type, camera, iso etc)
> lots of fun, rob
> some of my pictures treated like this can be seen on (studio 2005)
> www.robpolder.demon.nl

It's a theme with a lot of variations. The main idea is to use effects
layers with the topmost one being saturation -100 and then alter the
color balance in an underlying one. One could even change the color
balance for different parts of the picture, with complementary layer
masks on a number of layers, emphasising, say, red in one area and blue
in another.

Which is a lot of math just to end up with a black and white picture.
:)
 
G

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Guest
Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"GamePlayer No. 1058" wrote:

> Is there a really good tutorial or even a really good plugin for either
> photoshop or paintshop pro that would convert my color photos to black and
> white and have good tone values.
>
> I dont mind doing it manually myself if I could find a good (easy for the
> layman to understand) tutorial using either of the afore mentioned
tutorials
> to guide me through it.

Russell Brown is a god :).

Towards the bottom of this page: http://www.russellbrown.com/tips_tech.html,
under Photoshop 7 tips look for "Seeing in Black & White". The tip works
under CS too.

I'm sure you'll find something else of interest on the page too.

Regards,

Ken Chandler
 
G

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On Thu, 17 Mar 2005 23:26:50 -0500, jfitz <jfitz@bigfoot.com> wrote:
>
> Try the free Virtual Photography plug-in from optikVerve Labs
> http://www.optikvervelabs.com/ .

I am disappointed to note that this program is for Windows only.

--
Ben Rosengart (212) 741-4400 x215
Sometimes it only makes sense to focus our attention on those
questions that are equal parts trivial and intriguing.
--Josh Micah Marshall
 
G

Guest

Guest
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On Thu, 17 Mar 2005 23:26:50 -0500, jfitz <jfitz@bigfoot.com> wrote:
>
> Try the free Virtual Photography plug-in from optikVerve Labs
> http://www.optikvervelabs.com/ .

I am disappointed to note that this program is for Windows only.

--
Ben Rosengart (212) 741-4400 x215
Sometimes it only makes sense to focus our attention on those
questions that are equal parts trivial and intriguing.
--Josh Micah Marshall
 
G

Guest

Guest
Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Ben Rosengart wrote:
> On Thu, 17 Mar 2005 23:26:50 -0500, jfitz <jfitz@bigfoot.com> wrote:
>>
>> Try the free Virtual Photography plug-in from optikVerve Labs
>> http://www.optikvervelabs.com/ .
>
> I am disappointed to note that this program is for Windows only.

Time to upgrade then!

<G>
 
G

Guest

Guest
Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Hmm, the section on Channel Mixer in the Photoshop manual?

<laughs>

I'm just kidding, the manual won't help. It's on my list for tutorials.
Luminous Landscape is a good start, but the article mimics deep filters by
saying 0-0-100%:
http://luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/b-w_better.shtml

You probably can't go wrong with The GIMP:
http://www.gimp.org/tutorials/Color2BW/

Cheers,
Newsie
 
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