Chapter 4, "Defying Reason," looks at destructive techniques for getting a black and white conversion. While these may not be the conversions that you want to use all the time, they are worth the exploration for the simple understanding of how Photoshop tools can affect the image editing process. Here you will work with black and white conversion to grayscale, split channel conversions, and using the LAB color space to create your conversion, as well as read an explanation of LAB vs. RGB.
Chapter 5, "Somewhere Over the Grayscale," is all about getting the most shades of gray from your conversion from color to chromatic grayscale. This chapter works with Photoshop and the use of the Black and White adjustment layer for your conversion. Here you will find out what kinds of images are best when using this conversion as well as what limitations this conversion contains.
Chapter 6, "The Black and White Zone System," provides a necessary discussion of what was a staple of black and white film creation, the Zone System, and according to the author, it is a must to understand even in the digital age. This system when practiced correctly allows you to expose and develop an image such that what you visualized at capture can be rendered in your print. This lesson provides an overview of the Zone System and how you can use it to create better images and prints.
Chapter 7, "The Black and White on the Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer," looks at converting to black and white through the use of the Channel Mixer. In analog photography black and white came first and then color, and thus black and white always remained the more refined and had better contrasts. In digital it is the opposite, so now you have to use the colors to bring out the quality in black and white. In this chapter you will learn about the use of Channels, the Channel Mixer Adjustment Layer, and how you can use them to get the most from each of the color channels.
Chapter 8, "The Black and White on Silver Efex Pro 2," looks at something other than just Photoshop for converting to black and white. Now you will examine conversions with Nik Software's Silver Efex Pro, a product that the author has been working with since its first alpha versions. The work here builds on the knowledge you have gained through the preceding chapter and in fact uses the same images; it will end with an image that you create here and combine with an image you worked with in Chapter 7.