The Capitol at Night

Camera : Canon Rebel XS 10.1MP Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens (Black)
Lens : Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS SLR Lens

Photo Processing and Management App: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2

How I ended up with the final photo:
This photo was taken in late Spring of 2009 at around 8:00 PM using my Canon Rebel XS and the the Kit Lens EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS SLR Lens. The camera was set to Manual Exposure using center-weighted metering and the exposure is set at 1.6 sec at f/8.0 to capture the lights sorrounding the Capitol Building. I also use a Dolica AX620B100 62-Inch Proline Tripod and Ball Head to mount my camera, hand holding the camera at 1.6sec is too much for me.

I use the Rebel XS Liveview feature when I took the shot, the Liveview really was a big help in focusing and framing the subject, I can zoom up to 10x on the cameras lcd. The liveview is a handy feature when doing long exposure shots especially for someone wearing eyeglasses. I use it mostly when the camera is mounted on a tripod.

Finally I used Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2 to import my raw files from camera to my computer. I also use Lightroom to convert this photo from the original colored version to black and white and to export the raw file to jpg format.

Converting to Black and White.

Converting an image to black and white has never been easier with Adobe Lightroom, you can probably have a good black and white image in a few minutes, here are some basic steps on how to easily convert a raw file to black and white:

  1. In Lightroom, Click on the Develop tab.
  2. Don’t ever use the Grayscale option beside the Color, leave it in color mode.
  3. Select the image you want to convert to black and white.
  4. Right click on the image and select Create a Virtual Copy. Don’t worry creating a Virtual copy of your image doesn’t create a duplicate file.
  5. You will use this Virtual Copy to create a black and white version of your photo. It’s good to always create a virtual copy so you can compare the updated images to the original shot.
  6. Scroll down a little bit until you see the Presence adjustment panel.
  7. Now, on the Saturation adjustment slider, slide it all the way to the left.
  8. You now have a black and white version of your image
This is the original shot of the photo above.

If you have some suggestion or comment, please do post them in the comments below. I love to hear your comments and suggestions.

Book recommendation:
The Complete Guide to Black & White Digital Photography (A Lark Photography Book)Michael Freeman—our top digital photography author and a worldwide name—presents the most comprehensive book yet on black-and-white digital photography. Oversized, beautifully illustrated, and far-reaching in scope, this guide is destined to be a standard reference for years to come.

Freeman covers all aspects of black-and-white digital photography: its fine art tradition as well as its techniques. Learn how to see and expose in black and white, digitally convert color to monochrome, and develop a black-and-white digital workflow. Explore creative choices and how to interpret various subjects most skillfully in monochrome. Finally, get an expert’s advice on printing and displaying black-and-white photographs to best effect.

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