Black & White In Color?


Lately we’ve been in a very nice rain/sunshine cycle.

It’s been sunny in the morning and with all the moisture that is on the ground it is soon heated and converted into clouds which pour rain in the evening and then clear up over night.

And so it was this morning. A little fog around the city judging from the highway webcams quickly burned away revealing clear blue skies. By noon I could see clouds forming on the horizon and grabbed my gear.

The plan was to be out for only a short time, an hour at the most and head home in time to pick my kids up from work. Ahh, the life of a retired dad. LOL It seems that my time is not all my own.

So off I went driving northward. I had a few ideas in mind to check out. Old metal granaries, stands of trees by the side of the road and some hilly crop land.  As I drove and stopped for the occasional photo with my camera modified to shoot infrared the clouds continued to form. Darned I thought, if only I had ALL afternoon to be out here but that was not to be.

I had just about gone as far as I wanted to in order to get back home in a timely fashion when I came across a brilliantly coloured field of yellow. Canola crops in central Alberta are in full bloom. The patchwork of yellow is incredible if you get to see the prairies from a high point.

Anyway, as I turned eastward to make my loop back home a canola field with tracks in it caught my eye. The clouds behind it were distant and forming. Not as pronounced as I would have wanted but what the heck I thought and then had a second thought. The last time I tried to shoot a canola field in infrared the blossoms ended up being a bright white with almost no tonality.

I knew that if I took the photo in color I could better get the look that I wanted so I walked back to the Rav, grabbed the “normal” camera which was already on its tripod and took a few color photos.

Ten minutes later I was home.

I immediately culled out the pictures that had flaws in camera and transferred the rest to the iMac. Using my RAW converter I opened up one of the color canola photos and processed it normally. The result was a bright yellow canola field with a few clouds behind it. To use the color one for me would have meant returning either in the early morning or late evening when the sun was low and colors better.

I knew that when shooting black and white if you used a red filter when shooting landscapes, blue skies go dark. So using a Photoshop plugin called Silver Efex I could simulate a red filter and voila. Black skies. That simple.

A little tweaking and cropping and this is the result.

Happy shooting,



~ by Dan Jurak on July 18, 2016.

2 Responses to “Black & White In Color?”

  1. My first reaction was: “Wow ! Is this ever nice!”

  2. Thank you Jane.

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