Hankering after the punchy appearance of old-fashioned high-speed black-and-white photography prints? Here’s an easy way to recreate the effect in our latest Adobe Lightroom tutorial.
Below we’ll show you step by step how to get gritty monochrome effects using Adobe Lightroom.
How to create punch black and white effects in Lightroom
01 Increase contrast
Start off in the Basic tab and click the Black & White option at the top – there’s no need for any fancy colour mixing tricks here, because we’re going for grit rather than subtlety, and the default conversion is fine.
Now push the Contrast slider right up to maximum.
This will block in any shadows in the picture, but that’s covered in the next step.
02 Increase clarity
One characteristic of great black and white is the strong delineation of objects, and Lightroom’s Clarity slider does this perfectly.
Push it all the way up to the maximum setting. At the same time you can push the Shadows slider up to maximum too.
Any artefacts will be masked very effectively by the grain effect we’ll apply in step 04.
03 Add a vignette
Switch to the Effects tab and apply a vignette. Push the Feather slider up to maximum to blend the vignette subtly.
Move the Midpoint slider down to minimum so that the effect begins almost from the centre of the image.
Use the Roundness slider to control the shape of the vignette.
You may need to be a little more careful with the Amount slider, though.
04 Add some grain
If the Clarity and Shadows settings have created any small artefacts or halo effects, the Grain effect will cover them up.
Lightroom’s ‘grain’ is very realistic, but you may have to experiment with the Amount, Size and Roughness sliders to get the look you like.
To judge the correct grain settings, it’s best to zoom in close.
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