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Can you convert from color to grayscale and/or black/white in Affinity Designer and/or Photo?

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Can you convert from color to grayscale and/or black/white in Affinity Designer and/or Photo?

 

This is very helpful for designing for the very few people who cannot see color in checking for background/foreground contrast.

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There are a number of different ways to remove colour, however these are probably the most common ways:

1) Go to Document > Colour Format > Greyscale.  Although I never use this as it's destructive and removes the colour information permanently

2) Go to Layer > New Fill Layer, fill it with white and set the layer blend mode to 'Colour'

3) Add a Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer and change the Output Channel to 'Grey'

4) Add a Curves Adjustment Layer, set the layer blend mode to 'Colour', then drag the bottom-left corner point of the curve to the top-left corner (so that it's a horizontal line)

5) Add a HSL Adjustment Layer and drag the 'Saturation Shift' slider all the way to the left (-100%)

6) Add a Black & White Adjustment Layer

7) Add a Black & White Adjustment Layer, and change the default values from 100%, to the following values to mimic method 3 (adding a Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer).  R=29.8%, Y=88.5%, G=58.9%, C=69.9%, B=11.4%, M=41.2% (for RGB 8-bit images only, the values will be different for RGB 16-bit images).  You can record this as a macro.

8) Add a Soft Proof Adjustment Layer and set the Proof Profile to 'Greyscale D50'.  This will mimic method 1 (Document > Colour Format > Greyscale)

9) To do it via 'Layer Effects' for a layer or group.  Open the 'Layer Effects' settings.  Go to 'Colour Overlay' and set Blend Mode to Colour, Opacity to 100% and Colour to white or black.

 
It's worth noting that the different methods give different end results as a straight B&W conversion, as per the below examples (click on the first image, then use the left/right arrow keys to scroll through them).  The Monochromacy/Achromatopsia 'Color Blindness Simulator' on this site, appears to be using something similar to methods 2 or 3 above.

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008.thumb.jpg.e8b6d9888677e43488145a6b945af4d0.jpg

009.thumb.jpg.831999812e40e14fdfaefc9b74073010.jpg

 

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You can also use the free NIK plugins in AP. They have an app just for B&W conversion.


Skill Level: Beginner, digital photography, digital editing, lighting.

Equipment: Consumer grade. Sony Nex5n, Nikon D5100, (16MP sony sensors)

Paid Software: Affinity Photo, Affinity Designer, Lightroom4

Free Software: NIK collection, Sony CaptureOne9, Cyberlink PhotoDirector6, Hugin, ImageJ, MS Ice, Davinci Resolve

Computer: Win10 home, CPU Skylake I7-6700, GPU Saphire HD7850 1G, Plextor SSD

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22 minutes ago, Nic727 said:

There should be an option in "effect" to convert into grayscale/black&white in Designer. There is just too many steps to achieve that right now.

What is wrong with the first method @Sima mentioned? That is a one step method, albeit a destructive one.


Affinity Photo 1.7.2, Affinity Designer 1.7.2, Affinity Publisher 1.7.2; macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 iMac (27-inch, Late 2012); 2.9GHz i5 CPU; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M; 8GB RAM
Affinity Photo 1.7.2.153 & Affinity Designer 1.7.2.6 for iPad; 6th Generation iPad 32 GB; Apple Pencil; iOS 12.3.1

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32 minutes ago, R C-R said:

What is wrong with the first method @Sima mentioned? That is a one step method, albeit a destructive one.

 

Method 6 is one step. Methods 2 and 3 are more than one step, but they’re almost as quick and easy.


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Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher 1.7.2.471 • Windows 10 Home (4th gen Core i3 CPU)
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.7.2.153 • Designer for iPad 1.7.2.6 • iOS 12.4.1 (iPad Air 2)

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1 hour ago, Nic727 said:

There should be an option in "effect" to convert into grayscale/black&white in Designer. There is just too many steps to achieve that right now.

 

Designer  Layer > New Adjustment > Black and White (Ctrl + Shift + Alt + B)

Photo  Layer > New Adjustment Layer > Black & White Adjustment (Ctrl + Shift + Alt + B)

 

are both one step processes, with keyboard shortcuts.

 

You even get the option to adjust the conversion, if you want. Or not, if you don't want the extra step of dragging a slider to improve the conversion.


Windows PCs. Photo and Designer, latest non-beta versions.

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16 hours ago, Nic727 said:

There should be an option in "effect" to convert into grayscale/black&white in Designer. There is just too many steps to achieve that right now.

If you want to do it via the 'Layer Effects' settings for a layer or group, I've added it to the original post as method 9 (this creates the same end result as method 2).

Dialogue.png.1bcc22f77140caa5ed011af414eb9a1f.png

 

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is there a way to add warm to the black and white? coming from lightroom, i can use split tone to achieve that.. in Affinity Photo split tone doesn't seem to apply to black and white images.

Any advise?

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Look at the Adjustment Panel and choose Split Tone


Win 10 x64 System with Intuos Pen & Touch
 - Sys : Intel® Core™ i7-7700HQ CPU @ 2.80GHz (8 CPUs), 16GB RAM
 - GPU 1: Intel HD Graphics 630, GPU 2: NVIDIA GTX1050, 4GB

 

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3 hours ago, ryan.lio said:

is there a way to add warm to the black and white? coming from lightroom, i can use split tone to achieve that.. in Affinity Photo split tone doesn't seem to apply to black and white images.

Any advise?

Look at the Adjustment Panel and choose Split Tone


Win 10 x64 System with Intuos Pen & Touch
 - Sys : Intel® Core™ i7-7700HQ CPU @ 2.80GHz (8 CPUs), 16GB RAM
 - GPU 1: Intel HD Graphics 630, GPU 2: NVIDIA GTX1050, 4GB

 

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@- S - exactly what i was looking for thank you! just needed to simply convert a complete black logo to white without unnecessary steps!

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