Critique Countryside buildings

Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
I shared two of these photos in my post about my hike two days ago. It was suggested by Ken that I convert the buildings into black and white. I'm still very new to black and white conversions. I gave these a try. I thought that a lot of contrast might really show off the textures. I would love to hear your thoughts. Since the sky was nearly the same color as the snow, it made for a bit of a challenge, but at the same time, it let the buildings really stand out. So that's what I was going for here. I converted in Silver EFEX Pro. I didn't use any presets but did the conversions manually using global sliders and with some control points.

#1
DSC_2852-Edit.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


#2
DSC_2859-Edit2.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


#3
DSC_2844-Edit.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2007
Messages
20,981
Location
Northern VA suburb of Washington, DC
Very nice set, Terri! The contrast seems pleasantly normal to me and the textures in the buildings are appealing.

Considering that you're new to making monochrome images, consider placing some control points on the snow and taking control of the pixels by aggressively bringing out the shadow tones. Doing so will add more interest and more of a three-dimensional feel to the snow. Ironically, doing so will also make the white tones look whiter even though they've been unchanged. Even if doing all that proves to be nothing more than an exercise that produces an appearance you don't like, it will probably be helpful to know that capability exists for use in other photos in your future.

I converted in Silver EFEX Pro. I didn't use any presets but did the conversions manually using global sliders and with some control points.

I rarely use presets other than my own custom presets that add toning to the image. The few times that I do use a preset, I use it only as a point of departure; I customize the settings to achieve the look I want.
 

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,264
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
These are excellent, Terri! Great subjects and the conversions are very nice. My only suggestion is to re-visit the processing for #3 and see if you can recover the roof covered in snow. On my calibrated monitor, the roof-line basically disappears....
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
Very nice set, Terri! The contrast seems pleasantly normal to me and the textures in the buildings are appealing.

Considering that you're new to making monochrome images, consider placing some control points on the snow and taking control of the pixels by aggressively bringing out the shadow tones. Doing so will add more interest and more of a three-dimensional feel to the snow. Ironically, doing so will also make the white tones look whiter even though they've been unchanged. Even if doing all that proves to be nothing more than an exercise that produces an appearance you don't like, it will probably be helpful to know that capability exists for use in other photos in your future.



I rarely use presets other than my own custom presets that add toning to the image. The few times that I do use a preset, I use it only as a point of departure; I customize the settings to achieve the look I want.
Thank you!! I'll try adding texture to the snow, Mike. If I come up with something I like, I'll add it to this thread. I didn't think about trying to bring out the texture in the snow, but it could add interest.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
These are excellent, Terri! Great subjects and the conversions are very nice. My only suggestion is to re-visit the processing for #3 and see if you can recover the roof covered in snow. On my calibrated monitor, the roof-line basically disappears....
Thanks, Karen! I tried to do that on the roofline of the house already. This was the best I could come up with. I'll work on it some more.
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2005
Messages
29,610
Location
Moscow, Idaho
I like 'em, especially #2. It really shows of the gritty texture of the corrugated siding.The fence posts in #1 are strong.

I hadn't noticed the disappearing roof line in 3, until Karen mentioned it. Not sure what I think—as is, or with more texture in the snow.
I typically go through a bunch of presets to see what the range of possibilities is, then I start customizing a preferred preset. I find that using color filters helps me a lot.
 

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,264
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
Thanks, Karen! I tried to do that on the roofline of the house already. This was the best I could come up with. I'll work on it some more.
I just opened image #3 in PS and created a new layer with overlay blend mode. I can brush over the roof with black and recover just enough contrast to define the upper roof edge. For some reason, my Nik SEP will not load. I'll have to solve that problem later after I make soup for our neighbors who are having a tough time right now.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
I like 'em, especially #2. It really shows of the gritty texture of the corrugated siding.The fence posts in #1 are strong.

I hadn't noticed the disappearing roof line in 3, until Karen mentioned it. Not sure what I think—as is, or with more texture in the snow.
I typically go through a bunch of presets to see what the range of possibilities is, then I start customizing a preferred preset. I find that using color filters helps me a lot.
Thanks, Nick. I didn’t have a chance to get back to this yesterday. Thank you for looking at these and giving your thoughts. I want to try adding more texture in the snow, for comparison, although the light was so flat there may not be much to bring out. I always try the color filters too, but they didn’t do much on these images because there wasn’t much color to start with. Do you have snow? We are supposed to get rain tomorrow so ours may not last long.
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
I just opened image #3 in PS and created a new layer with overlay blend mode. I can brush over the roof with black and recover just enough contrast to define the upper roof edge. For some reason, my Nik SEP will not load. I'll have to solve that problem later after I make soup for our neighbors who are having a tough time right now.
I’m going to try this later today. Thanks, Karen!
 
Joined
May 5, 2005
Messages
22,178
Location
Idaho
A beautiful set, Terri!
Wonderful compositions and processing.
So very different from our farm buildings.
Thanks, Bart. This area has a lot of older buildings that haven’t been torn down. I keep thinking that I should try to photograph more of the old barns around here. The modern buildings don’t have nearly as much character.
 
Joined
Apr 30, 2006
Messages
2,481
Location
colorado
Working on snow texture is really easy ....If you use control colors U points in Nikon Capture Nx2
 
Joined
Sep 13, 2007
Messages
20,981
Location
Northern VA suburb of Washington, DC
If you use control colors U points in Nikon Capture Nx2

She has the same technology available to her in her set of Nik filters. I've been using that technology ever since it first became available in Capture NX2, then in the Nik/Google set of filters and now in the DxO Nik filters. However, I'm skeptical that separating the roof from the sky in photo #3 will be easy using those control points. I was hoping to try it but for some reason her image file won't load in Nik Silver Efex Pro 2.

If I'm right about that, I would probably make it happen very easily using Adobe Camera Raw's brush and settings sliders. If I began post-processing the image as a raw file, I would revert to it using the smart object created within Photoshop CC. Whether I began working with a raw file, I could instead use Adobe Camera Raw as a filter in a new layer.
 
Last edited:

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,264
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
Perhaps Terri has saved the image with a security setting? I just opened one of my images in PS CC and then opened NIK SEP. NIK SEP is working just fine.
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2009
Messages
17,571
No, the reason is the colour mode the file is saved in: B&W
SEP won't open this kind of files.
It suffices to change the Colour Mode to RGB in PS to be able to open the file with SEP.
Won't do much good though: there's not enough difference in "colour" between the snow on the roof and the sky to make a selection using control points.
You would need the colour image to proceed from there.

For what is worth: I can see the roofline against the sky. Just.
I wonder why this would be necessary though.
I alway let myself be guided by the situation of the light at the moment of shooting.
In this case, I need to guess of course: wasn't there. I imagine the difference was vague in the real world as well. Provided you are concentrating on the wall and windows of that building.
For me, my reaction is roof? what roof? :D
I handle deep shadows in a summer scene in the same way: when there are deep shadows and very brightly lit parts in a scene, the shadows will also appear almost black to the eye as well.
Lifting these in processing with HDR, local adjustments to make them look almost evenly lit with the bright parts, feels "unreal" to me.
I realise this is not a popular or wide spread look on this and I certainly respect other peoples point of view and find these even interesting.
Sorry for the side step.
Back to the Colour mode of the file at hand:
(bridge)

Nikon_Café_-_Adobe_Bridge-Terry-20210102.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


PS
Mode_en_Image_en_Menubar.jpg

After that, no issue to open in SEP.

I do get a message about a profile that is not available in PS but that message can be ignored.
 

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,264
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
Great info, @Bart ! I was always told it was best to save .jpg files in sRGB for internet use.....even if they are B&Ws. So the Color Mode issue never occurred to me.
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2009
Messages
17,571
I have a secondhand camera that produces monochrom images @Butlerkid.
I remembered you have to make sure they are treated as RGB otherwise SEP won't accept these.
It's a "set it and forget it" kind of thing but I remembered the need for this.
 

Latest threads

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Nikon Cafe is a fan site and not associated with Nikon Corporation.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Forum GIFs powered by GIPHY: https://giphy.com/
Copyright © Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom