Roundtrip in Black and White

Old Tree - Black and White

This is a photo of a tree beside Route 120 near China Camp on the way to Yosemite. I shot the photo on a gray day, and underexposed by about 2 f-stops to exaggerate the dark feeling of the branches. Here’s the exposure data: 95mm, 1/800 of a second at f/14 and ISO 200, hand held.

My first step in processing this image was—somewhat paradoxically—to tease the colors out of the RAW file, with these results:

Old Tree

This is an interesting and unusual result in its own right. It pleased me next—and I could use the comparison in a current project I am working on—to “roundtrip” the image back to monochromatic.

I haven’t posted the RAW file as part of this story, but believe me it is far less inspiring than either processed version I am showing. As a matter of fact, I usually don’t show my RAW files—as opposed to my processed versions my original files are mostly a private matter.

Which do you like better, the color or the black and white version?

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. I like the B&W better but then I’m an old time B&W guy.

  2. Old oaks just seem to lend themselves to BW.

  3. The monochromatic version so far is preferred about three to one, but some really do fancy the color version; for example, this comment on Flickr: “I like much more this colour version because of the contrast between those fantastil blue and rose colous in the sky and the green colour in the tree and soil.”

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