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bhammitt Jan 27, 2006 9:23 AM

Off work today and decided to revisit this old relic as rain is supposed to move in over the weekend. Photos were taken shortly after sunrise, converted to b/w adjusted levels and sharpened. I'm still not getting the look that I am going for, I will just keep going back under different conditions till I do. My favorite photo from today is the close up shot of the tower, just looks haunted to me, kinda would like to climb up there cept I'm a big chicken.:G

Bob H.

bhammitt Jan 27, 2006 9:23 AM

close up.

smac Jan 27, 2006 9:35 AM

Hey Bob, I love the subject but, your right there is some tweeking needed. If you don't mind the suggestion, try downloading the "free plugins" from . There are some interesting effects that can be created, not only in color but B&W as well. I used one on the refuge road shot, and then tweeked some more in brightness/contrast. I used Melancholytron. Uhmm? Now that I think about it that might have been one that I purchased. No matter it wasn't very much. and I think you can try it out for free. Good luck, I can't wait to see what you do with the shot. Here is the link: Steve

bhammitt Jan 27, 2006 9:44 AM

Thanks Steve, I'll give that a look!


thekman620 Jan 28, 2006 3:21 PM

Hi Bob. After looking at both relic posts, I'm voting for the first one. For me, it captures a more sombre and derilict mood. And I love the sky background in the first one too. The 2nd postings are good too, but in the first one, you really captured a mood for me. Excellent photo. Which is your favorite?.......cheers......thekman.

Corpsy Jan 28, 2006 6:22 PM

I wonder if you wouldn't mind posting the color version? I suspect you might be able to get the look you want by using a different method of converting to black and white, and if you post the color one I could demonstrate them to you.

bhammitt Jan 28, 2006 6:51 PM

Hi Corpsy! I would love to see what you can do with it, here is a color version. Thanks for taking the time to work on this!


bhammitt Jan 28, 2006 8:10 PM

Hi kman! I would have to say my favorite one of the bunch so far is the close up of the elevator tower then the photo in the first post. For some reason I like the shadow if the chimney cap or what ever it is on the tower. Kinda looks psychoesq, like Norman Bates would live nearby.


Corpsy Jan 28, 2006 8:30 PM

OK, the problem with the image is that the building and the sky are too similar in shade, so that while the color version seems to have a nice contrast between them, the b&w conversion loses that separation.

What you want to do is, in Photoshop add an adjustment layer called Channel Mixer. This is a very powerful adjustment that can be used to change the color balance of an image, as well as affect how the colors are interpreted for black and white conversion.

To do the latter, select the "Monochrome" checkbox. Your image will now appear black and white. It achieved this by mixing the color channels according to your slider bars. By default it will be using the red channel at 100%, so the other two channels are not being used.

The first thing I wanted to try with the image is to make the sky appear darker compared to the building, so I brought the blue channel way down to -56%. Bringing it into the negative causes it to take away light rather than add it, and therefore make all the blue areas darker. I then used a mix of 72% red and 70% green. It's usually best to get a mixture of all three channels to ensure minimal detail loss. Here's what I got from that:

This basically achieved what I was trying to do, but it doesn't look natural. Also, the logs have a strange halo around them. So, I tried the opposite, make the building darker relative to the sky. I disabled the Channel Mixer adjustment and added another with 16% red, 52% green and 42% blue. Here's what I got:

That doesn't look too bad. I'd probably brighten the logs a bit, but this could work.

You can also turn down the opacity of the adjustment to get a more controlled desaturation effect. Here's the adjustment at 65%:

Give it a try and see if you can get the look you were going for.

bhammitt Jan 28, 2006 8:47 PM

Thanks Corpsy! I like the look of the last one you did best. Dustin over in crits and techniques suggested retaking with a different sky. I think I am going to wait till we have a spring storm with some ominus looking clouds and run over there and get a few more shots. Thanks for taking the time to work on this!


John Maddock Jan 29, 2006 12:32 PM

Some more great images there: actually I rather like the warm glow in the colour version, but all the b&w's are great too. I guess the only other thing you could ask for is a really photogenic stormy sky or something in the background, can you order one up for your next visit? :-)


bhammitt Jan 29, 2006 12:37 PM

Thanks John, I am keeping my fingers crossed for a stormy looking sky. I am starting to think one of my problems in black and white is the color of the building, I wish it were darker or rustier to make it stand out from the sky more.


bhammitt Jan 29, 2006 1:04 PM

I just went outside in the yard and took this photo of the sky and then pasted the elevator photo on it and used my transparency tool in Corel photo paint to get rid of the unwanted areas to get this quick edit. I know this is cheating, but it is close to what I am looking for, I will take a real photo like this when conditions are right and I can make it down there.


John Maddock Jan 30, 2006 5:13 AM

Cheat all you like :-) That looks pretty good to me!


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