Common problems with travel photos and how Camera Raw can help

Common problems with travel photos and how Camera Raw can help

Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements

Once you’ve processed your raw file in the Camera Raw editor, click Open Image to take it into the Photoshop Elements editor and you can start to get even more creative.

By removing the colour information you can draw attention to the shape of the dark trees as they contrast against the greyscale mountain’s midtones.

In the simple steps below we’ll demonstrate how the clever Convert to Black and White command enables you to use the photograph’s colour information to lighten or darken specific features in the mono conversion and give them more impact.

We will also show you a nifty non-destructive dodge and burn technique which enables you to make selective contrast tweaks.

Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements: step 1

01 Convert to mono
In the Layers palette, click on the locked Background layer and press Cmd/Ctrl+J to duplicate it. Go to Enhance>Convert to Black and White. You could manually tweak the Intensity of the RGB sliders to change the contrast of specific greyscale tones, but this runs the risk of clipping shadows and highlights.

Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements: step 2

02 Play with presets
Experiment with different preset styles. The Infrared Effect lightens the green and yellow vegetation, which makes it blend in with the grey mountain rock. To make the foreground details contrast more effectively with the mountain, use the Portraits style to darken the grass and trees. Click OK.

Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements: step 3

03 Fill with grey
Our high contrast mono conversion will benefit from a little selective dodging and burning to emphasise certain details. Choose Layer>New>Layer. Click OK. Go to Edit>Fill Layer. Set the Contents Use drop-down menu to 50% Gray. Click OK. Set the layer’s blending mode to Overlay.

Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements: step 4

04 Dodge and burn
Grab the Burn tool. Set the Exposure option to 20%. Set Range to Midtones. Spray over the grey cloud at the top left to darken it a little. Spray on the grey mountain at the right to darken it too. Grab the Dodge tool. Set Range to Highlights and Exposure to 12%. Spray to lighten the foreground snow.

PAGE 1 – How to rescue travel photos in your Camera Raw editor: steps 1-6
PAGE 2 – How to rescue travel photos in your Camera Raw editor: steps 7-12
PAGE 3 – Convert your travel photos to black and white in Photoshop Elements

READ MORE

Photoshop Curves Tool: 6 techniques every photographer must know
Raw Editing: what you need to know about white balance correction
3 selective adjustment tools your raw files can’t live without
Photoshop Levels Tool: 6 tricks all the pros use