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Part II:: Practical Retouching > Creating Great Grayscale Photos from Color

Chapter 8. Creating Great Grayscale Photos from Color

It’s a long day’s journey into black-and-white. And the trip back is even worse. However, it never fails. You’ve got a really great picture, but it’s black-and-white. How do you add color that isn’t there? Or, you may have a color image and would prefer a grayscale rendition. That, at least, sounds easy—until you try it. If you want to convert a good color photo into a bad black-and-white image, or a great grayscale picture into a terrible-looking colorization, you can do the job in minutes.

In practice, converting a color photo to a grayscale picture that accurately represents all the tones of the original is trickier than you might think, and adding color to a photo that was created in black and white is just as tricky as you imagine. This chapter helps you understand both processes and provides some tips for performing the transformation from color to black and white. Then, in the next chapter, we venture into another form of image alchemy: creating colorizations, duotones, tritones, and n-tones from your images.


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