The theme of week 4 is Before and After.  The objective is to show an image straight out of the camera and then show after processing in LR and/or Photoshop.  I chose to take an image of Rosie, my English Cocker Spaniel, and show various ways to convert from a color image to a black & white image.

First image is affectionately referred to as SOC, straight out of the camera. It is the raw file without any adjustments.

Even if this remained a color image several items would need some work. The sign on the right should be removed. I was practicing off camera lighting and since I was working without an assistant, I needed to secure her to something to keep her in one place “relatively.” The leash also should be removed. And her eyes need to stand out more. The exposure is okay, but could use a little more contrast or snap. And I think it needs a tighter crop. Since she was moving around I decided to give some room and crop as part of processing.

Conversion to B&W can be done in either LightRoom or Photoshop. I am aware of several conversion techniques in PS although I am sure there are probably many more.

The next image is the LR B&W conversion. It was then imported into PS for the other adjustments, i.e. leash removal, eye brightening, etc. I realized after doing this that I should have imported the color image into PS, done the adjustments, sent it back to LR, and then converted to B&W in LR. Because I did the other corrections to a B&W image in PS, I didn’t have a color image with the adjustments to apply the PS conversions to. So I had to make the other adjustments for a second time.

The next image uses the Calculations feature in PS.

English Cocker Spaniel in park

The next image used the Gradient Map feature in PS.

English Cocker Spaniel in park

The last image uses the Channel Mixer feature in PS. You could probably achieve the same in LR, but I prefer to work in PS as I feel that I have more control.

English Cocker Spaniel in park

Viewing them on the Internet, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of difference. The LR conversion appears to have a cooler tone and less contrast than the PS conversions. Of the PS versions, the Channel Mixer and Calculations offer the most control of the individual RGB channels. The Gradient Map does not offer much control.

Overall, I prefer the Channel Mixer version. The foliage and grass is a bit softer, but the dog still retains good contrast. But a caveat in that contrast is greater on the screen than in a print, especially a print with a matte surface. The real comparison would have to be made with print.

So that is it for Dog Biscuit Photos “Before & After.” Please check out Elaine Mueller Tweedy of
I Got The Shot Photography serving Northeastern PA and surrounding areas to see what magic she has worked in her “After.”

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