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One of the reasons why Adobe Camera Raw is so popular is because it gives you so much flexibility, and because you can make changes so quickly. That is definitely true with converting to black and white. Let's go ahead and select this file, antelope_valley. Let's take a look at how we can convert this to a compelling and engaging black and white image. We're going to open this up in Camera Raw. Let's do so by pressing Command +R on a Mac or Ctrl+R on a PC. Now the first thing that we could do here would be to simply drag our Saturation slider down.
That would then remove the color, and then from there what we can do is increase Contrast or increases our Blacks or overall Exposure. Yet the problem is that we don't have a ton of control. For example, let's say that I really wanted to darken the sky. Well, what we need to do in order to have more control is to reset this image, and then go to another area or another panel inside of Camera Raw. So on a Mac, hold down the Option key. On a PC, hold down the Alt key. That will change Cancel to Reset.
All right, let's reset the image. Now this time, let's click on our fourth tab here. It's the HSL or Grayscale tab, which will open up this panel. Now here we can have really distinct and unique control of the image. Pay attention to a few things here first. The sky is blue. The grass, we have a lot yellow in it. Then this path actually has quite a bit of orange or maybe a little bit of red in it. Well, let's go ahead and click on Convert to Grayscale. Well, if I want to darken the sky, all that I need to do is to click and drag my blues and maybe some of my aquas down.
Here you can see I've really dramatically improved the image already, pretty quickly. Now what about the grass? Well, let's go ahead and brighten up the green and the yellows there. Then we can control the path, and we can add a little bit of color to that path, and make that much more interesting simply by controlling these different tones. We're controlling the tones of what used to be in color. We're taking advantage of that color data and now we're creating a much more compelling, and interesting, and engaging back and white photograph.
Now once we've made these adjustments, ee can, of course, always head back to the Basic controls. Here we could add a little more Contrast, or some Fill Light, or some Exposure, and we can keep processing this until we get this to a place where it looks really good.
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