I was asked to show an image before I went in and tweaked it. While this picture itself isn’t technically perfect as you can see the camera (never the photographers fault) locked focus on his guitar strap. The lighting in the room was horrific and I called it urine yellow for lack of a better description. Since I shoot in RAW I could go back in and color correct it for tungsten lighting, use my best friend forever, the histogram to get color balance and then converted it to black and white with minor tweaking from there. I no longer use fancy third party plug-ins for my black and white conversions. Instead I use LightRoom and just convert it there. I found when I used a plug-in I would be all over the map and my images lacked consistency.
What is funny about all this is that these images were shot on a Canon XSi but the saving grace was that I had a 50mm 1.4 that I had invested in. If you are going to invest in photography skip spending big on the body and using a stock lens. I would put the money into lenses because you can always just buy a new body later when you need one but your lenses will stay with you for a long time. I will also come clean now in say that I don’t see a reason to invest in L lenses either. Sorry, the price difference and performance difference isn’t there from my perspective to warrant the huge price difference from Canon middle of the road lenses.