B&A- The Chainlink Cafe

This past weekend, I visited the West Virginia Penitentiary.  A rather disturbing and thought-provoking place, especially in regards to the comments of the people around me on the tour… but socio-political views are not part of this blog. Photography is.  Some posts will be upcoming, but first– it’s been awhile since I’ve written a B&A so we’ll start there.

A friend recently shared a new “trick” with me about combining a B&W and color image and in seeing an example, I realized it enhance the photo to give a more contrasty grungy (like the musical term, not as in dirty…) tone to the photo so I decided to try it out on one of the photos from WVP.

Here is the SOOC version….

First thing I did was crop it a bit as I didn’t really want people in the shot.  Then I hit the “enable profile corrections” in LR.  I recently switched from Olympus (which LR doesn’t have lens profiles for) to Nikon (which it does!).  I knew that some one of my Olympus lenses (the 25mm pancake) had bad barrel distortion and would try to fix it manually… what a nightmare! OK, I’m off topic… basically, if you are using LR and you haven’t discovered this amazing feature, check it out! Especially when you have a photo with lines in it… so, the cropped and “corrected” shot…

Next, hit the B&W and export it to GIMP/PS/PSE… whatever you use.

Now, play with the sliders or presets to get the colors you like.  The original was a bit dark, especially on the right side, so I increased the exposure on that side with a gradient.  Then I decided on the “RogersParkNE” by SarahJI (I’ve mentioned my love for her presets previously).  I did a bit more tweaking on clarity and exposure…

Send that version on over to your editing program and overlay it onto the B&W version.  Blend with overlay, I think I used about 70% and there ya go…


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5 thoughts on “B&A- The Chainlink Cafe

  1. Interesting technique, I’ll try it. Works well here, your final version is better than both the colour and the b&w versions, like a grungy cross processed feel.
    Looking forward to your other shots from the visit – and I’d love to hear what the comments of the people around you were.

    • The tour guide, an ex-guard, made comments about tormenting the prisoners… some of the people were like, well they got what they deserved and such… but these were after stories about how 990 people died at the prison during riots or other violent outbreaks, in the worst offenders area the cells were 5×7— there was a point where there were 3 inmates to a cell. And these people still acted like they were animals. I hadn’t really thought much about prison life before, or overcrowding issues… just made you think. And even if they are violent felons, I think you have to have some level of compassion for life. And if they weren’t murderers going in, it’s no wonder they become murders inside. rant over.

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