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In Photoshop Lightroom 3 Essential Training, author Chris Orwig provides a comprehensive look at Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3, the popular photo-asset management, enhancement, and publishing program. The course covers indispensable techniques such as importing, processing, and organizing images in the Library, correcting and adjusting images in the Develop module, and creating slideshows, web galleries, and print picture packages. In addition to exploring all of Lightroom 3's capabilities, this course is rich with creative tips and expert advice on photographic workflow. Exercise files accompany the course.
Before we get to actually making a really nice black-and-white conversion, what I want to do is step back for a moment and talk about black-and-white conversion workflow that involves using virtual copies. I want to talk about this in order to give us some ideas on how we can different iterations of our black-and- white conversions. Let me explain. Well, here I have this color photograph and let's say I want to convert it to black-and-white. Typically, what I do is I create a virtual copy and I do that by way of shortcut. On a Mac, I press Command+Apostrophe; on a PC, I press Ctrl+Apostrophe.
Once I have done that, I then go to the Black & White panel and I make some kind of a change. I am just going to make a generic change, darkening the sky here, lowering the blue amounts. Well, the problem with this approach is that I can't really evaluate this conversion. In other words, if I press the Backslash key right now, it goes all the way back to the color photograph. Now why is that? Well, what's happening is it's going all the way back to the original state of this file when it was created as a virtual copy.
In other words, this is what the image look like when I created the virtual copy by a way of a shortcut. I will press the Backslash key again to go to the after view. Well, let's say that I want to push this image further, but I also want to be able to kind of come back to this view here. All I need to do is press Command+ Apostrophe again on a Mac, Ctrl+Apostrophe on a PC. Now here I am going to grab my Target Adjustment tool and this time I am going to go ahead and brighten up the grass. Well, now if I press the Backslash key, I am going to go back to the original state of the virtual copy.
So here is my before and then my after. Well, let's say I want to take this even further. I will press Command+Apostrophe again or Ctrl+Apostrophe again. This time with the Target Adjustment tool selected I am going to go ahead and brighten up the path there and then I am going to darken the grass. I am going to bring that down a little bit. I am going to hover over the sky. I am going to darken up the sky even more. So now I will have even more dynamic of a black-and-white conversion. I will press the Backslash key. Here is my before and then my after.
Yet another way to compare all of these is by simply clicking on these different virtual copies. So here is my first attempt, my second attempt, and then finally my third attempt which I think so far is looking the best of the three. So by using virtual copies, it can help me compare and contrast my images. Now a nice way to compare files of course is in the Library module. So if you select your virtual copies by clicking on one, holding down the Shift key and clicking on another, you can then press the N key.
The N key is a shortcut key for Survey mode. What Survey mode allows you do is to have multiple images visible at one time. At this juncture, press the Tab key to hide your panels on your left and your right and you can view the images in a way that's a little big bigger. In this mode, I definitely know this image is not a keeper. So now I have these two photographs which I can compare side-by-side which will help me determine which particular black-and-white conversion will work best. Well, now that we know a little bit about black-and-white workflow, let's take a look at how we can make these black-and- white conversions perhaps even better by extending this workflow and using some of the other tools that we can find inside of the Develop module.
So we will go ahead and continue to work on these photographs, and we will do so in the next movie.
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