Thursday, August 20, 2009

True Black and White

For as long as I've been taking pictures of my kids and punching them in as black and white with photo-editing (I use Picnik), I've never been truly happy with the result. However, the moment it hit me as how awful just using that b/w button is was when I had some photos printed out of the kids for a spring portrait. It wasn't black and was grey and white!

Is is grey or gray. I know I've seen both, but the little red line pops up when I type an "e" in there. Is one way British? I've always liked spelling things the British way, anyway, so I'll keep with grey.

Alrighty then! Reining back in....

So after this eye-opener to the greyness-factor, not to mention the flatness-factor also, I started trying to figure out what to do. Yesterday I finally came across an answer in the form of an amazing blog. This gal is fantastic! If you want inspiration, are craving some eye candy or simply have a love for great photography, check her out. I followed her 5 steps to better black and white photos. They were simple to follow and with a little fiddling on my own (which is, let's face it, part of the fun of photography) I was able to get results much closer to what I've been hoping for.

Here we have the photo of my girl that's been simply changed into a black and white photo with the click of a button.

Here is the better black and white:
087closer to true bw

Emma bw collage
I put them side by side here so you could see the differences.
There's no more just grey and white, but there's now black, grey and white.
The flatness that is there in the first is gone. It's replaced with textures in the tree, the shirt, the hair, the skin.

I am so happy!
Thanks go to Becky at be ART!!


mwell said...

Oh goodness those are gorgeous!
And I cannot get Picnik to work on our computer. :-(
I am stuck with Picasa and Photobucket. They're not horrible...but how I long for Photoshop. ;-)

Lacy said...

Wow! What a difference! I have been on a color-kick lately, so I haven't been converting very much to black and white. (And... I am a fan of sepia-toned photos, too.) But maybe I'm not much of a fan because that's the way my black & whites typically turn out, too!

I am hurrying over to that site to learn those tips!

Thanks for sharing.

Melissa Stover said...

i'm going to read her site now. that is amazing.