MAC users - do you know any easy way to render a B&W image in Carrara?

UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012
edited May 2018 in Carrara Discussion

In the new Challenge, there may be a need to produce a B&W image.  It can certainly be done with shaders, or in photoshop (postwork is OK).

But it would be nice if there was a free and easy way to make the image B&W in Carrara.

PC users can use the free GMIC plugin.  It is not yet available for Mac users.

One solution that I hoped would work for Mac users, suggested by Stezza, is an old B&W plugin on Carrara Cafe.  However, I couldn't even get it to work.  Fortunately, Head Wax posted a link to his copy of the file.  For some reason, his version worked fine!  I then asked a Mac user to try it.  It showed up in his Carrara filters menu, but it would not load properly.

Does this file just not work on a Mac?  I don't know for sure without more feedback.

If any other Mac users want to give it a try, or have another solution, please let me know.  I will add solutions to the Challange as they become available.

Post edited by UnifiedBrain on

Comments

  • DesertDudeDesertDude Posts: 1,173

    Hi UnifiedBrain,

    I tried the filter from Carrara Cafe and the link from head wax - both showed up in the filters, but both failed to load.  :(

    I'm on Mac Yosemite.

  • de3ande3an Posts: 911

    Plug-ins need to be written for the operating system that they will be running under. So you need a Windows version and a Macintosh version.

    One of my pet peeves is that it seem most people creating add-ons for Carrara are only creating Windows versions.

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012

    Hi UnifiedBrain,

    I tried the filter from Carrara Cafe and the link from head wax - both showed up in the filters, but both failed to load.  :(

    I'm on Mac Yosemite.

    Thanks for checking it out, DD.  I'm sorry too. :(

     

     

    de3an said:

    Plug-ins need to be written for the operating system that they will be running under. So you need a Windows version and a Macintosh version.

    One of my pet peeves is that it seem most people creating add-ons for Carrara are only creating Windows versions.

    OK, but the link did not mention the operating system, so that is why I'm requesting that you guys test it.

    I would like to see add-ons for Mac as well.  Maybe it is harder for developers.  Maybe more developers tend to be PC users.  I don't know.

    Part of the reason for starting this thread was to get an idea of how many Mac users actually enter the Challenge.  Another part was to see if any Mac users had another solution to rendering in B&W, besides a complete shader readjustment.

    More Mac comments appreciated!

     

  • DesertDudeDesertDude Posts: 1,173
    edited May 2018

    Oooh! Maybe a solution, I can't believe I tried this before and just found an old test file!!! (After combing the web for absurd solutions, lol!)

    Try this to see if it works for all.

    You have to render you image first, then bring it back into Carrara.

    Insert a plane, then size it to proportionally fit your image. My test image is 640x480, so I made my plane 6.40 m x 4.80m.

    Make a new Shader, or use the default, and set all channels to none.

    In the Glow channel choose Color Gradient. Set the value on the left to pure black, and set the value on the right to pure white.

    In the Shader choose Texture Map and load you rendered image.

    Voila! Plus, you can adjust the contrast, brightness using the gradient sliders. smiley

    Edited to say: yeah that's not really a solution. For Mac users we can always use the freebie Preview app and go to Tools > Adjust Color and turn the saturation down to zero. 

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    Post edited by DesertDude on
  • de3ande3an Posts: 911
     
    de3an said:

    Plug-ins need to be written for the operating system that they will be running under. So you need a Windows version and a Macintosh version.

    One of my pet peeves is that it seem most people creating add-ons for Carrara are only creating Windows versions.

    OK, but the link did not mention the operating system, so that is why I'm requesting that you guys test it.

    More Mac comments appreciated!

     

    Oh... I made the assumption that Andrew (head wax) was using windows.

    I did examine the plug-in files and found that the .mcx files contained the tell tale line "This program cannot be run in DOS mode". Mac .mcx files don't have that line. So the plug-in that came from Andrew, and the ones at Carrara Cafe, are Windows versions.

    There is a way to create a grey scale image in Carrara, but for some reason it creates a negative image. So you would still need to bring it into an image editor and invert it (which defeats the purpose).

    The setting is in the Render room under the Output tab: File Format / TIFF 16Bit GreyScale.

    The render still appears in color, but gets saved as an inverted grey scale image.

    GreyScale TIFF.png
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  • DesertDudeDesertDude Posts: 1,173

    de3an, super intersting to know....thanks for sharing! I just tried it and yeah, that works.

    I have been on whirlwind of trying to make some fake lens, fake lights,...everything I don't know about, lol. I hate giving up but I'm giving up for now. 

    Cheers!

     

  • WendyLuvsCatzWendyLuvsCatz Posts: 31,141

    am not on my PC but I thought one could in a multipass filter and I assume both Windows and Mac have the same ones

  • de3ande3an Posts: 911
    th3Digit said:

    am not on my PC but I thought one could in a multipass filter and I assume both Windows and Mac have the same ones

     

    I don't see anything in the Multi-Pass list that would result in a grey scale image.

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  • DesertDudeDesertDude Posts: 1,173

    I looked as well, but I saw nothing that would produce a greyscale image. Please correct me if I'm wrong. (Guess I'm still not giving up...)

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,021

    Photos and Preview on the Mac can both convert a color image to black and white, and are included with the OS.

    We'll have to see the theme for the challenge, but forcing people to make a black and white image seems pretty restrictive. Especially if it is just to show off a plugin, or if the host just likes black and whites. They can be dramatic to be sure, with the contrasts between light and dark, but after viewing multiple black and white entries I fear there will be a sameness to the effect.

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012

    Just wow.

    The Challenge is already done and "in the can."  I will post it tomorrow. 

    I hope that others will offer support, rather than offer fear about something they haven't even seen yet.

  • AscaniaAscania Posts: 1,434

    Fenric's Pose and Shading tools contain a Color Balance shader you can use to desaturate.

  • Philemo_CarraraPhilemo_Carrara Posts: 1,121

    For basic B&W conversion, you can save the image in format "TIFF 16bits grey scale" and reload immediately. I'll try to come up with something more fancy and Mac compatible.

  • Persona Non GrataPersona Non Grata Posts: 1,365
    edited March 17

    .

    Post edited by Persona Non Grata on
  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012

    Thanks all.

    My attempt here was to find a FREE way to help Mac users easily change images to B&W.  In a PC, it is so darn easy with GMIC, and it includes a ton of additional B&W adjustment options.

    To keep this Challenge on a level playing field, I have allowed postwork for everything.  But it would still be nice if Mac users had an easier native B&W tool.

    Selina, I know about the DC plugins, and I hear that they are terrific.  It was a good suggestion, but you can't require entrants to buy a plugin.

    Still, there is something about that plugin you mentioned which sounds vaguely familiar... smileysmileysmiley

     

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,021

    Just wow.

    The Challenge is already done and "in the can."  I will post it tomorrow. 

    I hope that others will offer support, rather than offer fear about something they haven't even seen yet.

    "Just wow," what? You mentioned in your original post in this thread that there may be a need to produce a black and white image, preferably using a plugin. I said I would have to see the theme, but I expressed concern about the requirements and said why. I also pointed out free postwork options for Mac users, so it is not like I just complained without adding anything to the discussion. You don't have to like my concerns, but they were legitimate.

     

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012

    EP, I sent you a PM.  I have no desire to drag the forum into this discussion.

  • Persona Non GrataPersona Non Grata Posts: 1,365
    edited March 17

    .

    Post edited by Persona Non Grata on
  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,311

    what about this as an alternative concept,.

    in the shader room,.. (in the colour channel ) create a Mixer and use your colour texture map as the Blender,. between Source1= (White), Source2=(black),.... (or any greyscale values)

    Carrara will take the high and low values from the colour image and use that as the blender between your two source colours.

    you can adjust the black and white values in source 1 and 2 to suit.

    ;)

  • As long as we talk about pictures and not animation: you could just be better off in postproduction (Gimp, Affinity, Photoshop and the like). Here you easily can make subtle adjustments in tones and values .... and try it again and again without rendering again and again. Time saver. (Well, maybe that is challenging the intention of the challenge....but...what is a challenge without challenge?!)

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  • 3DAGE3DAGE Posts: 3,311

    I agree,. an image editor is the most effective and flexible method of creating greyscale images or footage,.

    some render engines also have the ability to output greyscale images.

     

    Another part was to see if any Mac users had another solution to rendering in B&W, besides a complete shader readjustment.

    there's absolutely no need to physically render a scene in only greyscale colours,. any image can be easily adjusted to greyscale to suit the users taste,. in any image editor.

    sequences can be batch processed

    PS; Sorry,. I'm not a mac user,. but,.. doesn't the mac come with any image editor thingy,. ?

  • UnifiedBrainUnifiedBrain Posts: 3,012
    3DAGE said:
     

    Another part was to see if any Mac users had another solution to rendering in B&W, besides a complete shader readjustment.

    there's absolutely no need to physically render a scene in only greyscale colours,. any image can be easily adjusted to greyscale to suit the users taste,. in any image editor.

    3DAGE, I respect your knowledge as much or more than anyone else's on the forum.  But "absolutely no need" is a little strong.  It depends on the context.

    If I was working for a client, I would - of course - use the tool which was easiest and fastest.  But this is a Carrara Challenge, and the point (at least to me) is to explore Carrara to the fullest and see what can be done "in house."

    In the past, as a host I have made "no postwork" a portion of the Challenge.  If there was an easy way for Mac users to render B&W images (in the same way that PC users can use GMIC) I guarantee that at least one of the categories in this Challenge would have a no postwork rule.

    And besides, I actually find it satisfying to be able to render greyscale in Carrara.  I could give a bunch of reasons, but I don't want to bore.

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