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In this movie, we'll explore the three most basic ways to create a Grayscale image in Photoshop. And as you'll see, they all end up producing different results. But they all involve the use of this command. Under the Image menu, you go to Mode and then Grayscale. Because for purposes of Photoshop and digital imaging in general for that matter, black and white and Grayscale are synonymous. Because the idea is you have black at one end of the spectrum, white at the other, and then you've got all these shades of gray in between. So I'm going to start things off by creating a couple of duplicates of this image.
this image. Go up to the Image menu and choose the Duplicate command. And I'll call this first one, Luminance only. It'll actually be our last image, you'll see why in a moment. And then, I'll create a duplicate of it. By once again, choosing the Duplicate command from the Image menu, and I'll call this one Blue to gray. All right. Then I'm going to switch back to my original image. And I'll go up to the Window menu, choose Arrange and then choose 3-up Vertical. So that we can see all three images at the same time. And I'll go ahead and zoom in on this left hand image and scroll it over, as well so that we can see the younger woman's face.
scroll it over, as well so that we can see the younger woman's face. And then I'll go to the Window menu, choose Arrange and choose Match All so that we can see that same portion of the image inside the other windows. And notice by the way, that my windows have rearranged so that my original image is first, Blue to gray is second and then Luminance only is last. All right now I'm going to switch over to the Channels panel, so that you can see that every one of these images is an RGB image. So it contains the RGB composite here at the top, along with the three independent channels, Red, Green and Blue.
So now notice if I go up to the Image menu, choose Mode and choose Grayscale. I'll get this message telling me, do I want to discard the color information? Because I am going to lose the ability to create color inside this document. If not or if you want to control the conversion, you want to use this command called Black and White. And we'll see how that command works in a future movie. I'm just going to go ahead and say Discard for now. And notice that we get this Grayscale blend. And we also end up with just one channel inside the Channels panel called Gray. So we no longer have the option to create color inside this image.
The good news is that this image is much smaller now, instead of having three channels, we have just one. So if we were to save this file to disk at this point, it would be about a third as large. All right now, I'll show you a different way to work. I'll switch over to the Blue to gray image. And notice here that each one of the channels is an independent Grayscale image. So if I click on the Red channel, I'm going to see, yet a new Grayscale version of this image. It's going to be quite light, because it's a portrait shot. And regardless of whether we're looking at pale people or dark-skinned people, they are going to appear lightest in the Red channel.
dark-skinned people, they are going to appear lightest in the Red channel. Next, we have the Green channel and you'll notice that it bears the closest resemblance to the Grayscale composite. So, we've got pretty much the same degree of detail going on. The Green channel version does happen to be lighter in this case. Her hair is significantly lighter, as well. But in terms of the general luminance composition, they are remarkably similar. And then if we switch over to the Blue channel, we have the most varied view of this image.
Once again, that's because we're looking at a portrait shot. So we're going to see the most variation in the skin tones, for example in the case of this woman, her freckles are really standing out. Well I happen to like this version of the image best because it's the most distinctive. So I'll go ahead and keep this Channel by going up to the Image menu, choosing Mode and choosing Grayscale. This time Photoshop says, hey, do you want to discard the other channels? I'm not going to mix them together. We're just going to throw the Red and Green channels away. And if I click OK, sure enough we're left with a single channel image and that Channel is called Gray.
that Channel is called Gray. For my final demonstration, I'm going to extract just the luminance information from this image. And you do that, by switching to a different color mode. So you go on to the Image menu, choose Mode and switch from RGB Color in our case, to Lab Color. And what that does, is it extracts the luminance information as you can see here. Indicated by Lightness from A and B, and A and B don't stand for anything. But what they indicate is in the case of B, if I were to go ahead and turn on that channel on as well, you can see we've got what is known as the Temperature Information.
you can see we've got what is known as the Temperature Information. That is everything from the yellows to the blues. Whereas if I were to turn off B and turn on A, then were seeing what's known as the Tint Information. Folks commonly say that were seeing everything between magenta and green, but that's not strictly true. It's more like we're seeing everything between pink and turquoise. Anyway, I'm going to turn both A and B off here. And to just keep that luminance information, I'll make sure that Lightness is selected here in the Channels Panel. And then I'll once again, go up to the Image menu, choose Mode and choose Grayscale.
go up to the Image menu, choose Mode and choose Grayscale. And again, Photoshop will ask me, if I want to discarded the other channels. Once you become familiar with this process, you can turn on the Don't Show Again check box. But in my case, I'm just going to click OK. And we now have the straightforward luminance information. All right, I'm going to tab away the panels, just so that we can see more of the image at a time. And so once again, we've got three different ways to mix three different Grayscale versions of an image. You can either mix a Grayscale composite, as over here on the left.
You can keep just a single Color Channel, as in the middle. Or you can keep just the luminance info and nothing else, as we see on the right hand side. The other option is to mix your own custom Grayscale image using either the Channel Mixer or Black and White and we'll see how those functions work in future movies.
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