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Old Aug 2, 2006, 8:48 PM   #1
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I have yet to purchase a 35mm Dslr. I was wanting to know if it is possible to take black and white photos with a digital? I like the kind of black and white that has the old fashioned look. Not just plain black and white but has sort of a worn look to them.

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Old Aug 2, 2006, 9:30 PM   #2
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Yes. Any digital pic can be changed to b&w very easily. A camera that lets you take pics in RAW mode will give you a little bit more leaway to tweak your image.
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Old Aug 2, 2006, 10:56 PM   #3
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You can convert in your photo program such as photoshop which is the best way to go because you still have your original color photo. Or you can do it in-camera. Most digital cams come with a b&w and sometimes a sepia setting.
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Old Aug 3, 2006, 12:35 PM   #4
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Thanks for your help. I was looking at some photos on Steve's site and he had actually done some B&W pictures with Sepia, and that's the type I was talking about. I just don't know what Sepia is. LOL!!! Sorry.

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Old Aug 3, 2006, 5:50 PM   #5
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Skee,

That old fashioned sepia look was originally done very many years ago, by chemical treatment of the B & W prints. The print was bleached & toned by cyanide, bromide & sulphide solutions.

This produced the brown look, which appealed to many. But more than that the sepia prints were more durable, and many survive until today.

As has been mentioned, the same effect can be acheived in some digital cameras and by photo editing programs. Some recommend it is best to take color images, and later convert to B & W or sepia as desired.

Baz.
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Old Aug 3, 2006, 6:20 PM   #6
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Thanks.

Are there any affordable programs to do this?



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Old Aug 4, 2006, 5:03 AM   #7
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Skee

The advice here is all good.

Yes, any digital image, taken from any digital camera can be converted to B&W or sepia.

Yes, it IS best to do this using software after you have taken the photo.It's dead easy to do.

Yes, you can get free software that will do both B&W and Sepia - try Google's Picasa. It's free to download - there's alink to it on my site: http://www.digital-photography-tips....phy-tutor.html- it's near the bottom of the page and says "Get photo software from Google"

Also . . . every digital camera I have ever used has a B&W mode, and most have Sepia mode. BUT, I wouldn't use them. I've written a page about why here: http://www.digital-photography-tips....otography.html

There are some other B&W tips there too.

As a final point about "sepia" images. There is no hard and fast definition of what sepia is. The yellow/brown look doesn't have any specific properties that make one tone of yellow "sepia" and another not.

If you use software (even inexpensive software) you can adjust the tone to your liking. Give it a try, and try other tones too - blue works well for a lot of photos.

Finally (gone on a bit, haven't I!), If you edit a photo to make it B&W/Sepia/Blue . . . never save it over the original. Use the "save as" function and give it a new name.

Hope this helps,

Darrell.

http://www.digital-photography-tips.net/index.html
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Old Aug 4, 2006, 8:22 AM   #8
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To digress just a bit....
I'm unclear if you've done much photography before, so I wanted to throw out a comment or two on the artistic side of black and white photography. Not that I do it, mind you, but I have studied it a bit.

One thing that color photographers don't really realize is how different taking good B&W images is. You really have to look at the world in a different way.

So when you start doing it in digital, you might find that images don't really work in B&W that you thought might. This is because B&W is really about contrast and light, not color (I know, sounds obvious....) but the problem is that we inherently (well, most any ways) see in color and therefor don't notice things like how shadows work in a scene. How light and dark effects where your eyes go and what they do to an image.

Another point is that it is easy to make something B&W which really isn't. The problem you'll get is subtle color casts to an image which you might not see on your screen but will be obvious when printed. Don't get disheartened when this happened. Do some web searches (or get some books) on how to do good color->B&W conversions. There are several good ways, so don't expect one answer. But when done wrong it can be really annoying. I know all too well....

Eric


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Old Aug 4, 2006, 8:52 AM   #9
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Eric,

spot on! You're absolutely correct - some photos just don't work in B&W.

I've spouted on about this before, and eventually added a page on my site devoted to it.

Have a look at: http://www.digital-photography-tips....raphy-tip.html



Darrell

http://www.digital-photography-tips.net/index.html
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Old Aug 4, 2006, 10:10 AM   #10
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Thanks so much for your replies. I have a 35mm minolta that I take film pics with. I have really never messed with ISO settings or B&W. When you guys start talking ISO, aperature and stuff like that, I just don't know what you are talking about. I am wanting to step up in my picture taking abilities and get a good digital camera that will allow me photograph my kids. They are active in baseball, golf and do a little tubing on their grandfathers boat. They are 6 & 9 and I would like to get some nice photos whether they be action photos or just some B&W ones to remember their childhood.

I really appreciate all of your help. I'm glad I found this forum.

Thanks again,

Skee
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