Discussion in 'Black and White' started by Alastair, Jul 11, 2015.
are people shooting in black and white or converting there color shots out of the camera ?
Speaking only for myself, on the rare occasion that I shoot B&W, I shoot it with the NEX-7 set to B&W.
With my main interest being Nature / Wildlife I don't find B&W all that interesting, given that Nature's colors are much of the attraction.
For experimental purposes, I have flipped a couple of Cardinal and Bluejay shots from color to B&W after-the-fact to compare them, see if/what IQ differences there might have been, etc.
But for the few rare times that I actually go after B&W for some reason, I shoot them as B&W.
I shoot only in raw so I always have the option to keep the color or go B&W. Sometimes I switch the camera (A7) to a monochrome creative style to view the scene in B&W but that still gives me a raw file with all options open. Final B&W conversion (if any) is in Lightroom or Photoshop; I tinkered with Perfect Effects and Nik SilverEfex but those never stuck with me.
Sometimes (not often enough) I shoot in monochrome on the NEX-7. Other times I convert my RAW files to B&W.
If I'm going for a b&w image, I want as much control over the process as possible, and shooting jpegs just feels like tossing away valuable data, so I always convert from a raw image.
I always shoot RAW+jpg and use the RAWs for the more serious stuff (prints, publications, ... ) and jpgs (color or BW) for quick and not too extensive conversions (web stuff).
Color originally and convert to B&W in post if needed
A quick article on shooting B&W vs. color...
B&W just works better for me in high contrast images.
Shooting in B&W in camera is great for composing black and white images, and also makes focus peaking easier. It's an amazing feature DSLR owners are jealous of.
But always shoot RAW + JPEG, always! That setting should never change.
You need the JPEG on there, so you can share full sized images to your phone/tablet. If you were wondering why the play memories app won't give you a full quality file, you are probably in RAW only.
And RAW is a necessity for any serious editing of B&W photos. Do not listen to anybody who says JPEG is just as good. Yes, RAW means you keep the colour information and so you can change the colour levels in post. But it also keeps a lot more information in shadows and highlights (often very important in B&W) and the extra bit depth is important to keeping smooth gradations in tone.
That was a good read, thanks
This thread, then the brief article Fractal linked about B&W got me thinking about B&W in general…started looking through some shots for possible candidates that could have also been shot in B&W.
I just flipped this color photo of unique V-shape layers of clouds and think it looks pretty good in B&W...going to try to give more attention to possible B&W opportunities.
You cannot shoot the same photo in color you would shoot if you had the camera set to B&W. It's the same point I was trying to make about having a zoom vs a prime. When I have the 20 on my camera, I shoot at 20mm, obviously. But if you have the 12-40 on, you don't look at what FL you're shooting. When you're done, you might realize that you've taken some at 15mm, some at 25mm, etc. The fixed FL forces you to shoot from different positions than if you had a zoom. And B&W is the same. If you're looking at the image in B&W on an LCD, vs you seeing it in real life or on a full color LCD or viewfinder, your shot selection will be different. That's one thing we as humans can't avoid. Just how you I can make you think I of whatever I want you to think of right now, and that is a rainbow. Now a rainbow in B&W. And so on. Anyway, I don't shoot B&W or with any filters except when I'm playing around with the 15 BCL.
And my point of this post is to say that images shot in B&W will be different than those taken in B&W. Because the brain will choose a different style, location, exposure, aperture, etc. I could go through and convert all my images to B&W right now. Some might look good. Similarly, I could crop all my images to 100mm. But give me a B&W only camera or a 100mm prime and have me go out shooting, the results will surely differ.
With my NEX I shoot in RAW with the camera set to BW creative style so the EVF is in BW but the actual conversion happens in post. I am curious about how well shooting in BW could work. It worked REALLY well on my Fuji but I am not so sure on the NEX. I'm gonna have to give it a go and see.
I prefer to capture in color so I can tweak the brightness of various colors in Lightroom or Photoshop as part of the conversion process. This comes in especially handy with weird light sources I encounter at the nightclub. The more common application would be darkening the sky for landscapes, something folks used to have to carry yellow, orange and red filters in order to do in-camera.
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