Posts Tagged 'Photoshop'

Photoshop Elements Tutorial – Converting to Black and White

One of the best things about shooting digital is that you don’t need to choose black and white or colour when you load the film, or even when you set up your camera and press the shutter. Not only can it all be done on the computer afterwards, you actually get better results that way. You can use it on anything from scenic landscapes to arty portraits and being digital you can always go back to colour if you don’t like it. In this post I will explain how to convert a colour images to black and white using the full editor in Photoshop Elements. Hopefully with a bit of luck you will end up with something that looks a bit like this:

Peak District Landscape, Yorkshire, England

Peak District Landscape, Yorkshire, England


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Progressing to the Next Level – Photoshop

In a previous post I outlined the benefits of editing your images so I thought it would be a good idea to outline the thought process behind my choice and some of the trade offs that need to be made. Admittedly it is nowhere near as important a decision as buying a camera but it is still a significant purchase than needs time and thought.

Free bundled software

I started of using the software that came with my camera, Olympus Master. However I quickly became frustrated by certain elements of the program and how it worked. Here are the main things that bugged me about it:

  • It’s slow as hell. Doing any adjustments took time and converting a RAW to JPEG took over 60s and killed the rest of the computer while doing it.
  • Lack of features, particularly for RAW development
  • Ropey looking results (although this is probably user error!)
  • Destructive work flow. Any edits made to pics are permanent so seeing the effect of what you have done is difficult.

So I decided to upgrade. I chose Photoshop Elements but why?

Photoshop Elements

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Out of Bounds Effect in PS Elements

Recently I posted the image below on the DPS forum and a few people asked me how it was done. So I though I’d write a how to. I used Photoshop Elements 6 but you can do it any software that can uses layers and masks

Junk Picture

The effect is called “Out of Bounds” or sometimes “3D¬†Border Breakout”.¬†First off you need to pick a suitable picture. Photos with a strong subject help, one that has some depth in the frame. Movement is also good but make sure your subject is sharp otherwise it won’t look great later on. There are a few different ways to get to the end product so this isn’t a definitive guide, it may not even be the easiest way but it works.

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Edit your images

Everyone feels differently about editing images once they get the photos into their computer. Some consider it cheating or a waste of time and don’t do any editing at all. Others people will add a few tweaks to every image to “develop it” or completely photoshop the crap out if it. Personally I like to tweak every image I deem wothy of display in order to show them in their best light. I belive this is a critical step especially when using a DSLR. Most DSLRs are set up by the manufacturers to give a fairly dull and muted final image as they assume the sort of person who buys one of these cameras will also be the sort of person who likes to edit their images. This is the reason some people are initally disapointed with the results when they upgrade from a P&S.

Here is an example of a before and after. The first shot, the before, is quite dull and washed out. The colours of the shot don’t stand out and the crop doesn’t really do anything for the the shot.

PA102022 before

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Welcome to my blog

I am an amatuer photographer living in Sheffield, England. My blog will detail my photography journey, from fumbling beginer to, hopefully one day, competant and knowledgeable photographer

By sharing my experince hopefully I can help every one else with the same goals and maybe, just maybe impart some of the knowledge I have leaned

If you have any questions or comments about the blog then why not email me.
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