Tag Archives: MWM

Colorless love and peace

I experimented with black and white processing using the pictures I took of my love and peace rose yesterday for this week’s mid-week monochrome. The raindrops stand out more strongly in black and white.

Bud of the heirloom rose, love and peace, turned to black and white using the GIMP.
This bud’s for you.
The love and peace rose in full bloom. The black and white treatment is in the GIMP.
In full glory.

These were changed into black and white using the GIMP. A post describing the technique I used is: Mountain landscapes in black and white.

The color images are:

The photos were all taken with a Sony RX10iv camera, iso 100 and aperture ranging from 4 to 6.3, focal length of 8.8mm (24 in 35mm equivalent). I use Raw Therapee to convert the raw files to images and do the initial edits then switch to the GIMP to do final editing, including the conversion to black and white.

Five petals

A rock rose.
Columbine

The only fives that caught my eyes this week.

The rock rose was converted to black and white using RawTherapee, an open source program, and the Columbine was processed using the Nik Silver Effects Pro plug-in for the Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP). I added a vignette and a focus blur in the GIMP.

If you are interested in checking out Raw Therapee or the GIMP there are a few posts here: The photo processing tools on my belt.

For Cee’s Black and White Challenge: Five.

May in black and white

For the past year or so I’ve been studying black and white. Specifically using open-source software (the GIMP and Raw Therapee). It is very interesting to see how different elements catch your eye when you remove color.

Here are a few photos from the past few weeks.

Spring woods

True spring green: Sunlight hitting the trees as they start to leaf up.
Fern Cove on Vashon Island in Puget Sound.
Fern Cove's spring woods converted to black and white.
Converted to black and white using the GIMP’s built-in mono-mixer tool.

Do you think it still feels like spring with the color removed?

Siberian Iris

My neighbor’s irises.
Raw Therapee has a tool that allows you to selectively brighten or darken individual colors.
Converted to black and white using Raw Therapee’s luminance equalizer method.
Silver Effects Pro in the Nik collection has a lot of really great pesets. This one is called "Fine Art".
Converted to black and white using the Nik plug-in to the GIMP.

This photo, with two variations shows how you can get different effects. I couldn’t decide which of these two black and whites to choose. In one the flowers stand out more from the background but there isn’t as much emphasis on the design on the petals. What do you think?

Un-furling

This photo is almost a mono-chrome in greens. The contrasts are in brightness and the sharpness of the details.
A bracken fern unfurling.
Another Nik collection preset: Film Noir #3.
Converted to black and white using the Nik plug-in to the GIMP.

I chose this one because it is almost monochrome in green. It’s probably not a fair comparison because the black and white had the background darkened and blurred a bit. Maybe I should go in to the colored one and try to emulate that effect.

Spring Sky

Changing weather viewed over Colvos Passage on Puget Sound.
Simple de-saturation using the GIMP’s built-in tool.

I was curious to see what would happen to this photo that doesn’t seem to have much color in it. It was a surprise to see that the black and white feels a bit warmer than the original.

For Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge and Brashley Photography’s Mid-Week Monochrome.

If you are interested in trying out these open source (free!) programs here are a couple of posts that might help: The photo processing tools on my belt.

Late fall close-ups

All of these were converted to black and white using Nik Silver Effects Pro.

For Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: close-ups.

North island textures

Sometimes it is the close ups that give you a real sense of place:

Shadows and textures really make the carving below. I think it looks more dramatic in black and white. The colors distract.

A Maori carving in a meeting house at the treaty grounds in Waitangi.

We spent a couple of weeks, amazing, delightful weeks, on the north island of New Zealand last January. It feels like more than 11 months ago. We were able to see our son over the Chinese New Year. He went back and while he was in the air going back the state department sent out its “do not travel to China” message. (I have some very pithy ideas about the US state department.)

Seeing him again is not in the cards in the foreseeable future, so I am sooo happy that we had that time right before everything closed down.

Any way you look at it…

My rose is about done now after a windy, rainy week and last light the wind changed and it’s gotten fairly chilly. Still it was a nice little bloom. I’ve been playing with different ways to use the picture of it.

Here are a couple of different black and white treatments. One on the lighter side and one on the darker side.

From the basic image to a partial sepia effect applied in the GIMP.

Since last February I’ve been experimenting a lot with different photo processing methods. I’ve spent a lot of time looking at different ways of creating and using monochrome…you’d think it would be simpler in black and white. But there are so many different ways to take the color out and adjust the light and dark that it seems harder than plain old color. Lately I’ve been rather liking applying the monochrome partially or overlaying the monochrome and color photos with different layer blend modes.

Posted as part of Friendly Friday: Two ways (Actually I used 4) and Brashley Photography’s Mid-week Monochrome.

If you take an interest in different photo processing methods you might like to take a look at the one-to-three photo processing challenge, on my other website.