November 11, 2010

Shoot Color and Develop Your Eye for Black and White

It is a given that shooting RAW files and converting to grayscale is the way to have your black and white photography come out the best. There are lots of tutorials, lessons, and software to help with that. I'm currently pretty excited about the results I'm seeing from Nik Software's Silver Efex Pro. I have heard and read plenty about it but only recently gave it a try. I'll be buying it.

But my post is about developing your eye. When I'm shooting, color is all around me. I see the color but have a hard time "picturing" the grayscale image sometimes. If I set the camera to capture grayscale jpeg's I get to see the image in black and white and it helps me develop my eye but I don't get all the RAW data I want later during post processing. 

So, my solution is to set the camera to capture RAW and JPEGs. Then I set the JPEGs to be captured in grayscale. The best of both worlds! I can edit the RAW later but develop my eye in the field. I'm having a lot of fun with it.