Create Incredible Ansel Adams Style Black and White Images

Posted by on Jan 30, 2015 in Photo and video editing, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Become a Modern Day Ansel Adams in Minutes with the Photobucket App

Ansel Adams circa 1947

Well OK, it’s not as easy as snapping your fingers to reproduce the expert results of a virtuoso like Ansel Adams, but we can definitely get close with the Photobucket editor. If you aren’t familiar, Adams was an influential American environmentalist and photographer – you’ve probably seen some of his work without realizing it. Popular through the mid-1900’s, his epic black and white landscape photos of the American West, especially of Yosemite National Park, are icons of black and white photography, and have been reproduced or mimicked just about everywhere and by everyone.

Evening, McDonald Lake, Glacier National Park (1942)

Evening, McDonald Lake, Glacier National Park (1942) by Ansel Adams

The Tetons and the Snake River (1942)

The Tetons and the Snake River (1942) by Ansel Adams

While Adams used a variety of lenses to get different effects, he relied more heavily on sharp focus, heightened contrast, precise exposure, and darkroom craftsmanship to gain the look he was after. If you’re like most of us, you probably don’t have access to all these things, and you’re probably taking snaps on your phone. Good news, we can get a similar effect with a great photo and the Photobucket Editor!

What you need:

  • 10 minutes
  • An epic, in focus image, preferably of a landscape or geologic formation
  • Photobucket account in the Photobucket App, or on web

Step One – Upload and Edit

Pretty self explanatory! Once you’ve uploaded, select your photo and launch the editor. We’ll be using the Android in-app editor for this example, though it works the same on iOS.

Select the ‘edit’ icon to get started

Step Two – Enhancing

Applying a black & white filter is the most obvious step, the rest of the details are up to you! Here’s what we did.

  • Select ‘Effects‘ and apply the ‘Metropolis‘ filter

    ‘Metropolis’ will get us to that B&W look we’re after

  • Select ‘Enhance‘ and apply ‘Hi-Def

    HD is actually a trick of adjusting the lighting to make details and textures pop

  • Select ‘Vignette‘ and lighten the vignette applied by the Metropolis filter (or not!)

    The vignette is the dark/light shading around the edges of a photo

  • Select ‘Lighting‘ and slightly increase ‘Contrast‘ and ‘Highlights‘ (adjust to whatever looks best for your photo!)

    Lighting is a powerful tool and can drastically affect the look of your image

Now tap ‘done‘ up on the corner of the screen to save your new masterpiece!

Before, and…


Step Three – Share, Print, Show off!

You can share directly from within the Photobucket app to just about anywhere. Share to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or whichever one happens to be your social media de jour. Just select the photo you’d like to share and tap the ‘share’ icon to select from a number of options. You can also share multiple photos straight from the album.

Tap the share icon to choose from tons of services

Don’t forget about the in-app Print Shop! You can quickly turn this masterpiece into a breathtaking piece of wall art. Head over to the Print Shop from the side menu or the home screen.

Print Shop can be accessed from the home screen or from the hidden side navigation menu

Next, select your product and be sure to use just one photo, rather than a collage, and then select your black and white.

Looks nice on a screen, would look better in my home

For a limited time, create a black and white masterpiece and save 51% off framed prints by using the code ANSEL51 


  1. Lanny Giba
    February 6, 2015

    Awesome and simplicity, goes hand in hand with Photobucket! I Love it. 🙂

  2. lydia condado
    February 2, 2015

    I loved

  3. berlinlife
    February 2, 2015

    Agape love…