2009-02-10

Use All Available Tools

Recently I read an interesting comment from a photographer on another blog site. In his opinion, the true test of a photographer is to be able to shoot a good quality black and white photo using in-camera process only. In other words, no photo editing.

In-camera black and white simply uses straight grayscale conversion. Anyone who has used this method in Photoshop or any other photo editing software can tell you that straight grayscale probably is one of the worst ways to convert an image to black and white. Being able to produce a good quality black and white in camera is not easy. So why make things more difficult for yourself? As I point out in my web site, there are many advantages to photo editing vs. in-camera black and white:

1. you can undo it.
2. you get better results.
3. you have a color backup.
4. you can adjust your technique.

Also, by setting your camera to black and white, you're letting someone else do the conversion. This is kind of like sending your film to be processed and printed by someone else. It may look good, but it may not look exactly the way you want.

Why not use all the tools available to you?

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