Sunday, February 04, 2007

Monochrome and CS3 Beta Bridge

Until I started shooting with a digital camera, all my work was shot with Black and White film. I have always loved Monochrome images and although you can change a color digital file to monochrome, I never was totally happy with the transition. I tried Channel Mixer. I tried LAB. I tried a couple of plug-ins that I liked better than making the change in Photoshop but still I wasn't totally satisfied with them either.

Now along comes an early Beta release of Photoshop CS3. I'm not even going to address the reasons for this Beta release or some of the other features but if you have Photoshop this Beta release is worth downloading even though it is still a little buggy. If for no other reason, it is worth downloading for the variety of ways it gives you to change a color digital file to a grayscale digital file. Shutterbug has a great article by George Schaub, CS3 Beta..B&W Improvements and Changes. Schaub outlines the ways you can change the image in Camera Raw and also within Photoshop.

The method that makes me very happy is one of the ways you can convert to B&W in Camera Raw. You can adjust exposure and such on the first screen but then click on the "H" tab and there you have the option for checking grayscale and THEN you have hue sliders so that you can adjust hues and make some of the original colors darker or lighter. More powerful than Channel Mixer. Infinite adjustments to the contrast in your image.....and all of this is before you open the image in Photoshop....all of these changes are totally non-destructive to your image. All your pixels are still very happy!


Howard Grill said...

I was just thinking of starting to play around with some black and white conversions so I am glad to hear there are some easier and very effective options coming along. I have also heard that Lightroom (though I have mixed feeelings about learning new software in addition to Photoshop) also has some easy and effective black and white conversions that con be done from it. Looks like digital black and white might be getting ready to 'break out'!

Billie said...

Howard, I think that more than anything it is the printing of B&W digital images. We want them to glow like a silver image and the paper to have the gloss, Dmax and texture of gelatin silver papers. I think we may be getting there too with some of the new papers.