Quick and Easy Black and White Photos in Photoshop | Maggie Hobson-Baker | Skillshare

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Quick and Easy Black and White Photos in Photoshop

teacher avatar Maggie Hobson-Baker, Art and Design

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

5 Lessons (17m)
    • 1. Quick and Easy Black and White Photos!

    • 2. Method 1: Black and White Adjustment Layer

    • 3. Method 2: Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer

    • 4. Method 3: Gradient Map

    • 5. Method 4: Hue/Saturation

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About This Class


In this course I will show you several methods to quickly create black and white photos in Photoshop.  Each photo has its own unique set of properties.  By learning several methods you are creating a toolset for strong black and white photos time after time.  This course focuses on the following 4 methods:

  • Black and White Adjustment Layer
  • Gradient Map
  • Channel Mixer
  • Hue/Saturation

This course will show you how to use the Dodge and Burn tools to target specific areas of your photos as well as how to work with the History Window to undo edits.  

Meet Your Teacher

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Maggie Hobson-Baker

Art and Design


Maggie is an artist, designer and Assistant Professor in Studio Art, living and working in the Philadelphia Area. Her work reflects her love of shape, color, nature and design. She loves drawing on her iPad, and Bamboo Tablet as well as working with traditional materials. You can often find her with her camera and sketchbook in the woods. She is especially interested in the dialogue between traditional and digital platforms in the creation of art and visual images.

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1. Quick and Easy Black and White Photos!: welcome to creating black and white photographs in Adobe Photo Shop. This course will walk you through a couple quick and easy ways to create very interesting black and white photographs. Now is I stayed in my videos. So much will depend upon the photograph that you have taken what is the best method to create the best results. So I'm gonna show you a couple ways that you can create black and white photographs, and you can work with these images and see which works best. And this course all begin with working with the black and way adjustment layer, and we'll show you dodge and burn dodging and burning inside of photo shop. From there we will move on and we will take a look at how we go about creating a black and white photograph. Working with the hue and saturation adjustment layer. Another video will show you how you work with the Channel mixer to create a dramatic black and white photo. And in yet another video, we'll take a look at working with Grady. It maps to quickly and easily create interesting black and white images. Black white photography is very powerful and will provide hours upon hours of fine thanks So much for taking the course. I look forward to seeing your photographs and the work that you're able to create. 2. Method 1: Black and White Adjustment Layer: OK, in this video, we're gonna take a look at some of the tools in photo shop for black and white photography . So we begin with our image now, so much. Also, we need to begin by saying is within the first image that we took. So we want to try to take best photos that we can. Sometimes the best images come from being outside in sunlight and indirect. Some light, Um, depending upon the weather, when all that good stuff, as you can see, this photograph was taken on a day where the sun was shining and there were a lot of interesting shadows and lights being created. Okay, so we begin and we have her image. We have our Lakers window open, and I also have my adjustments window open. Now, I also like to have open my history window because when I do something, I can come in and undo it quickly with my history. Now, if you don't see those windows, where do you go to find them? Well, if you come on up to a window and you click it, I just turned it off. Now I will turn it back on. Okay, so again. There are many ways we can create black and white images. This video will cover how to work with the black and white adjustments later. So we come on into our adjustments window and we click on Create a new black and white adjustment layer wallah. You have turned our photograph into a black and white image. Now what happens in the adjustment layer is we can come in here and we can work with the distribution of value on these different channels. So when I turn off my Black Away adjustment, I could see that my image has a lot of yellows in it. Ah, lot of Grady's, the Greys probably are. More will be under the blues. Uh, we can zoom in and really take a look at those pixels and some of the greens. So I come on in, and if I look at my yellows, maybe I wanted dark in my yellows a little bit so I can see that those yellows I've dark in them Now if I want to take my blues and Leighton those a little bit and it actually interesting, there's a lot of the blue actually on those benches may be the gray of, uh, the ground would be in the science, but nope. Now, I could also lighten up the greens a little bit, and there there is a little bit on the red so we can say that this image in particular has some colors in all of the different areas. So that would be a way that we could come in and, you know, adjust some of the images. Now we can also come in and work with dodging and burning. So we come on over to our tools when our tools bar Now, your tools bar might look more like this, or it might be long and straight. That was great about the tools to is that we can always hover to see where we are. So we come on over here and we have dodge and burn. So we begin with Dodge. And when we come to the Dodge, we can actually choose a certain area of the photograph on and with the Dodge, we're going to lighten them. So I'm going to say that I want to have my mid tones. I'm gonna put my exposure at 50 and I'm going to actually make the brush bigger. Okay, So I can come on in here and say I want to actually choose a 380 pixels, so I can see now nothing's happening. And that's because I am on the adjustment layer. I need to come on down. So this layer and I'm actually gonna throw out this lock. And I could even duplicate that layer if I wanted to. So I can see that what's happening as I do this, these are mid tones and it's starting toe. Lighten up a little bit. Maybe I just want to do this to the area in the front. I'm gonna make this a little bit bigger. So I just wanted to be like a a nice, just kind of want wash over. Okay, Are So there are so many possibilities now, the reason why I have the history open, it's because you can kind of come back here and see what you think, right? So I could come back here and say All right, that's what it looked like before. And you can start coming in and seeing what those changes that you've done look like. And if you get to a certain point if you like what? I went too far. You can go back on work from that that point. Okay, so that was the Dodge till we could see that we can Layton with the Dodge Tool. And I'm sure that you get that. What we would do with the burn tool is we would darken. And so we come on in over here, and we grab our burn tool, and again we can select certain areas. So I'm gonna say highlights. And I'm gonna come into these white polls here, and I'm going to darken them a little bit now. It's always good to sometimes to just zoom on in. Um, and the zoom tool in photo shop is right down in here. Okay, so we can click, you know, and zoom in on in. We can hold down minus and zoom on out. Plus for in minus. For out. I, uh, like the keyboard shortcut of command Plus to zoom in command minus to zoom out. Okay. So again, I'm going to grab onto my burn tool, and I am going to choose highlights, and I want to make this bigger so I can come on over here and This is the brush side. Now I have the hardness at zero. The recently I want to have the hardness and zero is because I don't wanna have hard edges . I want this to be more blended up to wrong thing one more time. Our present 3 50 So I can see that I'm darkening that I'm like, you know, I don't like that too much. You're gonna come back? I'm gonna, uh, make the exposure go even lower, cause that it will. It will. It won't come out so quickly. Um, so I'm gonna come on down, maybe just some of the areas. I just want to have alluded and a bit of a darker in some of the areas. And there we have it. So now maybe I want toe lighten up the wall on the side so we can see that. You know, there's a lot that you can do with the Dodge in the burn. So right here, I want to get a little bit more info in here. And actually, now that I'm looking at these benches to maybe even lightning some of these benches up in here and this over here, this wall between the windows to create more of a focal point in the front of this image. So here goes again. Right now, I have the burn tools. I'm gonna choose the Dodge told, and I'm going to put these in more as this one. I'm gonna put it as a mid tone and I can see that just kind of late. A little bit. Right. And, uh, these guys will open up to these guys. Should lighten up as well. All right, so there we have it. You can see that you can spend hours and hours and hours working with these photographs. And the history tool is your friend. So you could go back and history Tool. I believe it seems 25 of your last moves that you've made, you can set it for more. Now, the reason why it is so little is because Photoshopped is a memory intensive program. And if there were more, it was definitely run slower. And we like things to run quickly. The possibilities are endless. Working with photography, working with the black and white adjustment layer and working with the Dodge and burn tools . Thanks so much for listening 3. Method 2: Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer: this video. I'm going to take a look at another way that we can create black and white photographs working in photo shop with the adjustment window case. I'm gonna open up my history here. We knew history, and it looks like I have the Dodge Tool. Not quite sure why going to delete that? I could see I have my image right in here. So what I'm gonna do right now is I'm actually gonna work with the Channel mixer, okay? And when we come on with the channel mixer, we can actually get some nice dramatic results. We can actually click and turn it monochrome. Now, what we can do is we can come on down to the constant, and right now this image does have nice contrast. Let's even, Let's actually let's darken it just a little bit more, okay? And then we know that this image has a lot of grazing it. I'm sorry. Has a lot of reds in it, so I can come in and I can lighten the reds. I could even come in and address the sky and Leighton the blue. Obviously there is some blue in the building as well. Eso again, Just to recap very quickly is very easy to work with. Channel Mixer created Channel mixer adjustment layer. Click onto monochrome. We can darken the constant created darker, overall image and then target the different channels on the different color channels within the image and leighton them to create an image with some interesting contrast Quick and easy way Teoh, you know, create and ah, black and white image in photo shop. Thanks so much. 4. Method 3: Gradient Map: OK, in this video, I'm going to show you how to create dramatic black and white photographs working with ingredient adjustment layer in photo shop. Okay, so it's begin with the adjustment window. If you do not see your adjustment window, come to window and turn on adjustments now. And actually, there are several ways to make black and white photographs just within this adjustment window. The adjustment window is thes adjustment. Layers are nondestructive ways to edit our photographs. So what I want to do when I have this open is I'm going to click on to the Grady in map. Now, before I do that, though, I need to make sure that my color swatches the bottom are set to the default black and white. And if they're not, you just click this little box right in here. And now what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna come on in. I'm gonna click on to the greedy in map. And what has happened to your is Photoshopped has taken our image and has applied different values based on the colors that were in that photograph. Now you might be thinking Well, hey, this isn't too much different. How could we really come in and edit this and create more contrast? We can click on to the great hit map and we can see that we can come on in here and we can work with the contrast in the photograph by changing where the color stops are. Now again, this is set to this first pre set up in the top on our ingredient, our editor. So I can come on in and begin to reset things and start to see that I could get, you know, some pretty dramatic results from working with the greedy int editor and, um, working with this slider and through here. So there we have it Very quick and easy way to make dramatic black and white photographs in photo shop. Thanks for listening. 5. Method 4: Hue/Saturation: Okay, This next video, take a look at another way to create black and white photographs. Working with adjustment layers in the side of photo shop. We begin with our an engine. This image has such nice colors kind of machine to turn into a black and white, But we can see that it also has nice contrast. So that actually makes for a nice black and white image. And also, the adjustment layer that I'm gonna use for this is gonna target the different hues. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna actually choose a hue saturation. And what's great is you know, you can come on in and you can hover and see what you have. So let's do hue saturation. And what I'm gonna do is I'm going to de saturate. Now when you de saturate an image, you take all of the color out of the image. Now, I'm not gonna leave it at that. I'm going to apply a second hue saturation layer by just clicking one more time. And what I want to do here is I'm going to take this one and I'm gonna drag it above. I shall drive the one that doesn't have the d saturation under so again, up on top is one that I d saturated the color and on the bottom is the 2nd 1 Now, what I'm gonna do here is I'm gonna work with a blending mode, and I'm gonna come onto my layer, and I have this second one selected, and I'm going to choose luminosity. Okay, so now what luminosity is going to do is it's going to work with the brightness and the contrast, and I can target the different colors so I can come on in here and on this luminosity layer , I can you know, I could lighten it and darken it a little bit if I would like to work with the overall, but I can really target um, the color. So there was a lot a yellow in this image. I can come right into the yellow and, you know, work with even coming in and dark. Name that yellow. Um, and there we have it. So if I turn this one off, you can see you know that they are different. You might like one better than the other. Um, and, uh, actually, player on this little works and looking and taking rooms. Kind of like the one above it. Kind of like you better without it. So there we have it, lots of different ways that we can come and work with our images. And again, so much depends on the image that you're working. Well, now, when you get to this point to you can always come in with any black and white photograph and work with the Dodge and the burn tools. So again, the Dodge tool is gonna Layton. So if you want to come in and lighten this bottom part of the door, you could, um So we have mid tones that Would you just come on in and working with dodging and burning ? I went a little bit too far right in there. Somebody comments my history and just go back a little bit. Thanks for listening.