Everything is Black and White

Whew, I have some time to breathe so I thought I’d update this blog. Photoshop Elements 5… what can I say? I think it’s probably one of the best releases I’ve been associated with. One of the features I worked on was the Convert to Black and White (C2BW) workflow.

The C2BW feature allows you to easily convert your oh-so-colorful images into art. And with very little work… just a click of the mouse. By default, we try to guess at the settings that will look best for your photo. If it’s orientation is portrait we select the portrait option and landscape, well you get the picture. The interface to C2BW is really nothing more than a simplified version of the Channel Mixer found in Photoshop. But boy is it easier to use. Just start with the preset that you like and click on the thumbnail previews to make tweaks. If you screw up you can always hit the reset button (but you can also undo/redo in increments by pressing ctrl+z/ctrl+y respectively).

And a little hint for all you bit twiddlers… we read in a file named bwconvert.txt located in the <app folder>\Required that manages the settings applied in the presets. If you open that file in a text editor, you can tweak the numbers used. The format is as follows: <preset name>|<red>|<green>|<blue>. Don’t mess with the preset name (and don’t bother adding any presets as the preset list is set in stone), but you can change the values for RGB. And if you do make changes to this file, be sure and make a copy of it before you mess around so you have a chance to undo any possible damage.

Have fun!

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