A he creation of black and white more properly now called

"grayscale," images has nearly always been popular with photographers. There is just something special about them. The way black and white can change a scene and focus attention on form, shape, and shadow is part of their appeal. In the past, photographers had their favorite black-and-white film that they had to use if they wanted quality black-and-white images. Using a normal black-and-white enlarging paper with a color negative or even using a special black-and-white enlarging paper designed for use with color negative films did not give the highest quality results.

Today, using different digital techniques, beautiful black-and-white images can be created from color digital files. There are many different ways to do this. The lessons below are just a few of the more popular ways that are possible. Besides Photoshop, there are a large number of software solutions that offer varying degrees of control over the process. For the Mac there is iPhoto, Aperture, Lightroom, Graphic Converter, Photoshop Elements, GIMP, and many more. For PC there is Picasa, Lightroom, Graphic Converter, Photoshop Elements, Photoshop Album, GIMP, and others. All of these should be investigated if you love black and white and don't already have one of the other software programs. There is also a wide variety of plugins for Photoshop as well. It would take an entire book just to cover all of the different ways to convert a color image into a black-and-white one. The following lessons should get you started.

We will start with a color digital image of three colors of tulips against a black background as shown in Figure 1.1. This will help to make the differences between different types of black-and-white conversions stand out more clearly. None of the methods are inherently better than the others, although many photographers have their favorites. You may use one type because it is quick and you are in a hurry to get a rough idea of what a black-and-white image would look like. You may use another type of conversion because it gives you better control over the mapping of various colors into various shades of black and white even though it takes longer.

Figure 1.1 This is the color image we are starting with for the following lessons.
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