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Creating high-impact black-and-white photos

From: Enhancing Photos with iPhoto

Video: Creating high-impact black-and-white photos

To give you a few more ideas on black and white images, I just want to show you how several techniques can be combined to get interesting results. In this first image, I'm going to go ahead and really crank up the Levels, getting some dark areas, and blowing up the brights. Now, I'll switch over, and apply the Black and White effect. Notice that tweaking the Levels really makes the image more interesting, and I'm pushing some of the less important areas down, and then finding the balance there with the midtone Slider.

Creating high-impact black-and-white photos

To give you a few more ideas on black and white images, I just want to show you how several techniques can be combined to get interesting results. In this first image, I'm going to go ahead and really crank up the Levels, getting some dark areas, and blowing up the brights. Now, I'll switch over, and apply the Black and White effect. Notice that tweaking the Levels really makes the image more interesting, and I'm pushing some of the less important areas down, and then finding the balance there with the midtone Slider.

I'll crank the Contrast up, and lift the Shadows a bit, or lower them. And notice how I can use that as a localized adjustment to refine. That's looking a lot better. I love the definition, and I'm going to Sharpen the heck out of that. And that's a very dramatic black and white photo. Let's go to our next image here. Okay, let's tweak this one a bit. I'm going to toss on the Black and White effect to start, with a little bit of fading. That looks interesting.

Then we'll refine that with some Contrast. Now, in this case, the color can be controlled by using Warmer, or Cooler. I'll come on over to the Adjust tab, and tweak the Temperature slider here, and notice how that's really bringing out some of those areas. I can't emphasize enough the use of Definition. Look at how that texture in the wall just pops, and high contrast here. I'll then turn the Shadows, and Highlights to control the areas, and in this case, I'm going to go for a very sharp image. Where it started, where I took it, and a lot of those areas are just interesting.

Now, I've got one more photo, and this is one that I really want to push far. It's an abstract; a grate on a window. Let's get a really high contrast photo to start. There we go. Open up the Exposure a bit, and recover the Highlights. All right. High definition there. Let's zoom in at 200% for a second, and I want you to notice what that Definition slider is doing. It's bringing out a lot of the noise.

I'll bring it back to 100, and we'll go to an area that's in focus. As we drag Definition over, look at how it just selectively brings out the contrast. I'm going to Sharpen that a bit, and put some noise in, so I'll pull that back down, and that looks good there. The combination of Sharpness and Noise are actually fighting each other, but I like how it's making a very gritty, brittle image. Okay, we'll pull that out there, toss on the Black and White effect, and blur my edges a bit. Now notice, boosting a black and white image.

Now, that gave it a nice gritty tone. I like that. It's a little bit of a duotone effect, in fact, and if I look at the original, to the after, that's a much more interesting image.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Enhancing Photos with iPhoto
Enhancing Photos with iPhoto

46 video lessons · 3522 viewers

Richard Harrington
Author

 
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  1. 1m 54s
    1. Welcome
      29s
    2. What you should know before watching this course
      31s
    3. Using the exercise files
      54s
  2. 10m 19s
    1. Working in Full-Screen mode
      1m 26s
    2. Entering Edit mode
      56s
    3. Switching images
      1m 28s
    4. Checking the info on an image
      2m 14s
    5. Zooming in for detail
      2m 14s
    6. Using the navigation window
      53s
    7. Seeing the before and after state
      1m 8s
  3. 12m 6s
    1. Straightening crooked photos
      2m 22s
    2. Rotating an image
      1m 16s
    3. Removing red-eye
      2m 14s
    4. Cropping for better composition
      1m 39s
    5. Cropping a photo to a specific size
      2m 35s
    6. Cropping multiple sizes
      2m 0s
  4. 16m 13s
    1. Understanding the histogram
      3m 13s
    2. Making a Levels adjustment
      2m 15s
    3. Fixing an underexposed photo
      2m 36s
    4. Fixing an overexposed photo
      2m 42s
    5. Improving contrast
      2m 36s
    6. Adjusting shadows and highlights
      2m 51s
  5. 12m 41s
    1. Improve a washed-out photo with saturation
      1m 30s
    2. Increasing saturation while protecting skin tones
      1m 58s
    3. Boosting an image to quickly fix saturation
      1m 51s
    4. White balancing a photo
      2m 24s
    5. Removing a color cast manually
      2m 35s
    6. Stylizing an image with effects
      2m 23s
  6. 14m 28s
    1. Converting to black and white
      2m 21s
    2. Refining a black-and-white effect with temperature
      2m 21s
    3. Creating high-impact black-and-white photos
      3m 5s
    4. Creating sepia-tone effects
      2m 29s
    5. Double-processing for duotone effects
      4m 12s
  7. 13m 45s
    1. Using the Retouch brush
      1m 55s
    2. Removing noise
      2m 10s
    3. Sharpening a soft photo
      1m 52s
    4. Adding punch with definition
      2m 5s
    5. Defocusing a photo
      2m 15s
    6. Controlling the focal point with vignette effects
      1m 26s
    7. Adding borders with iBorderFX
      2m 2s
  8. 8m 27s
    1. Duplicating an image
      47s
    2. Reverting to an original
      1m 49s
    3. Deleting an image
      3m 4s
    4. Copying and pasting adjustments
      44s
    5. Preserving maximum quality when exporting
      2m 3s
  9. 22s
    1. Goodbye
      22s

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