MDJAK wrote in post #17064804
Even with after market plugins, I can't seem to get a good B&W image.
Just how many different shades of gray are there, 256?
What makes a good B&W? Does it have deep blacks and then lighter and lighter shades of gray? I recently shot an elephant in the zoo, turned it BW in LR and it is just a mass of light gray. Actually looks terrible.
This is such a broad question that it's impossible to get a simple answer. It really just depends on the image. Someone can give you advice on a good workflow for producing black and white images, but maybe your images just worked better in color in the first place. Or maybe this black and white image needs one kind of treatment, but a different black and white image needs to be treated differently.
So, I guess for starters, don't try to force an image to be something it's not. Unless you're on assignment or something and your continued employment hinges on making it something it's not. But in general, I kind of see images as like people. They don't all need the same thing, they take on a life of their own. If you have to struggle to force an image to work in black and white, then I have to ask...why are you trying to do it in black and white? If it works better in color, then stick to color.
And that's not a rhetorical question. I'm really curious to hear the answer here. Is there a particular reason why you need this image to work in black and white, or do you for some reason just feel like you need to do some black and white photographs?
Anyway, I say...let the work go where it's going. Try it out both ways, obviously. But each image can be like a person with its own special needs. Don't try to make it what it's not, just listen to what it's telling you that it needs. If it needs color, then let it be a color image.