Color in a Black and White Image

Young couple kissing by water in Bali, Indonesia
Young couple kissing by water in Bali, Indonesia

Canon 5D Mark II camera and Canon 24-105mm f4 L series lens @ 105mm. Exposure Details: 1/50 second @ f3 ISO 400.I was running a photography class last night and a question came up about how to remove color from an image, except for a particular area like a flower, hat, etc. This is a simple procedure in a program like Adobe Lightroom, which I'II demonstrate online in a few weeks time.

For now you can see the technique illustrated in the above photo. It's a candid snap made in Bali. I spotted this young couple and anticipated the amorous advances of the young guy. I was, after all, young myself once. While I was too far away to see there faces I could see the heart shape on the bag and recognised the irony as I saw the image forming in my mind's eye.

The colors inherent to the scene were not particularly interesting. Removing all the colors didn't help all that much. But by removing all colors except for red, which existed only in the heart shape on the young ladies bag, the relationship between the heart symbol and the two young lovers is emphasised.

A simple image to be true. But an example of the power of irony and how the process of photography (including image processing) can allow you make something out of nothing.

Glenn Guy, Travel Photography Guru