Tips & Tricks for Black and White Conversions, with Vincent Versace

In his latest class, From Oz to Kansas 2.0, master photographer Vincent Versace takes the student through the various processes and conversion options using both Photoshop and several 3rd party plug-in options.

In his latest class, From Oz to Kansas 2.0, master photographer Vincent Versace takes the student through the various processes and conversion options using both Photoshop and several 3rd party plug-in options. The result is a thorough explanation that yields impressive control over a wide variety of subtle aspects of black and white images converted from color originals. You will learn several conversion techniques and methods for blending various conversions with one another to give you, the artist, a finished image that is the exact image you saw in your mind’s eye when you first considered your image. From tradition and theory to practical implementation, From Oz to Kansas 2.0 is exactly the kind of class that has helped Versace develop his loyal following.

Get instant access to this course & more

Rent Now $6.99
  • Rent this course and watch it as often as you like for three full days (72 hours), from the time of purchase. To access rented courses, login and go to your Account Management page. Internet connection required for streaming video (broadband recommended).

Course Lessons:

Lesson 1: Introduction (Duration 02:28)

Black and white images and understanding the best ways to capture them, is the starting point.

Lesson 2: The Influence of Channels (Duration 22:24)

After briefly discussing downloads and presets, Versace takes you through the characteristics of color channels and uses them to blend a rich black and white image.

Lesson 3: Classic B&W Conversions Using LAB (Duration 08:48)

The LAB color space allows users to create 2 B&W conversions that are decidedly better than simple desaturation.

Lesson 4: Gradient Map Conversions (Duration 09:40)

Gradient map conversions are powerful when applied to images which are nearly monochromatic to begin with, and are even more powerful when you strategically apply curves adjustments.

Lesson 5: Using B&W Conversions to Improve Color Images (Duration 03:18)

Not only can a good B&W improve the values of a color image, they can be used to target challenging color image enhancements as well.

Lesson 6: Split Channels (Duration 03:48)

A great method for analysis. A terrible method for straight conversions.

Lesson 7: InfraRed Conversions (Duration 11:33)

Starting with an image captured by an IR modified digital camera, special B&W conversions can recreate a convincing IR film look.

Lesson 8: Multi-Channel Mixer with Silver Efex Pro (Duration 28:19)

This technique most closely approximates film B&W control and allows the greatest amount of control over subtle aspects of the image conversion.

Lesson 9: Multi-Channel Mixer Using Only Photoshop (Duration 08:04)

Using sample points and color correcting by the numbers, this conversion technique doesn't use 3rd party plug-ins but it's still incredibly powerful and gives users tremendous control over subtle aspects of the image.

Lesson 10: Silver Efex Pro 2 Overview (Duration 08:12)

Vincent takes us through the various features and functions of Nik's popular, feature-rich black and white conversion tool.

Lesson 11: Black and White Isn't Always the Answer (Duration 03:40)

Some images should never be black and white. How do you know and what should you do about it?

Meet Your Instructor: Vincent Versace

Vincent Versace is an internationally recognized pioneer in the art and science of digital photography. His passion for natural light photography is manifest not only in his work but also…


  1. I always love his work...this course is no exception. One item, the Wacom settings he mentions as working for all versions of Wacom tablets does not work for the v5 tablets. It would be great to have this addressed! Thanks.

  2. In Tips & Tricks for Black and White Conversions Could you give instruction on how to use the download file and what are included? I have problem opening up the download file as it seems to have a strong file format.

  3. WOW!! If you are even considering doing any B&W conversions you must and I mean MUST watch this class. Even if you need to see it several times to bake it into your head. There is so much information there that it is absolutely staggering. This is art and science all rolled into one and Vincent is a master. Thank you thank you thank you!!!

  4. Hello Vincent, you took me back to the 'dark' room daze where I spent hundreds of rewarding and frustrating hours dodging, burning, and fighting dust spots. My first Zone System book was Minor White's "Zone System Manual" that cost $1.95 in 1971. I also have "Lootens on Photographic Enlarging & Print Quallity" as well as some of the Kodak Photo Information books on Filters and others. I learned darkroom work in the Army and your course was easily understood except for the multiple channel mixer section. Thanks for teaching in a manner that explains the "what, why, and how" in plain language. "See it - perceive it - print it"

Submit a Comment