Long Day’s Journey into Black and White

At first glance, this image might not look like it might be a good candidate for conversion to black and white. I can almost hear you yelling at me from across the wire. “Are you crazy?!? There’s a red chair in there. A RED chair. A RED chair! You must be nuts.”Ahem. Yes, I see the chair. I still think it will make an ok black and white. It’s got tones. Sure, red and green look a lot alike once everything is stone cold grey but, honestly, it’s got tones. And tones, generally, make for ok black and white shots. Seriously. OK black and white shots. I’m going to try anyway, you can’t stop me, right? Right?

I’ve been looking at converting a bunch of images over to the dark side, or maybe I should call it the dark and white side, since that’s what it really is. It’s kind of funny how sometimes images don’t look like they’d be good in black and white but then they turn out ok or maybe you think they’d look terrible but you have a go anyway and wind up with, BAM! something that’s not too bad. It’s taken me a while as a photographer to spot what might be a good conversion and, yes, I know I do tend to shoot things with the thought of converting in mind later on. I’m like that you know. But, sometimes I like to play too and poke around afterwards to see what I can coax. A girl’s got to have her fun, right?

Tonality has always been kind of difficult for me. I’m not a tone poet, not in the least. I’m more of a perspective kind of a girl, what can I say? Still though, I know to not discount the red chairs. Never discount red stuff, just because, well, just because it’s red, right? Even though I don’t shoot it a lot, I certainly don’t go out and hunt it, I’m not going to pass it up when you hand it to me either. (As the great philosopher Lady Gaga once wrote, “I’m on the right track, baby I was born this way.”)

If it works, look for the black and white conversion to follow. Until then, why, you’ll just have to settle for being able to say you knew those chairs back when they were RED chairs. Oh, and if you’re inclined to play around with black and white conversion, I recommend the NIX Silver Efex Pro conversion tools which are now available free of charge from Google. Seriously. Google, it would appear, purchased the Nik Efex and made them free so enjoy it while it lasts. I do rather like the conversion tools because they allow you to play around with different styles of conversion and get different looks. Am told the Alien Skin filters are good too, those would be a contender if I didn’t already like the Nik Efex so much. To each his own, I guess and, for all, a RED chair!

Until next time…

PS This one taken in Dakota with the Canon 5DS and the walkabout lens. Was dusty in there but we survived.

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