Converting Image to Grayscale with Python + OpenCV

Posted: September 23, 2012 in Python
Tags: , , ,

Hey guys, been reading OpenCV for python and thought of posting a tutorial on Programming a Grayscale Image Convertor. I encourage you to google them , there are lots and lots of examples and code snippets. This is on how to a convert any image to gray scale using Python and OpenCV.

A sample input image and output image are shown below (YEah, I am big Iron Man Fan! :B). You can click on image to enlarge:

I have placed an image named “ironman.png” in the current working directory (i.e. I have the original image in the same directory as the  place where I have saved my Python code).

First we import the cv2 module:

import cv2

Then ,read the image to a variable named “image” :

image = cv2.imread('ironman.png')

Now, to convert to gray-scale image and store it to another variable named “gray_image” use the function cv2.cvtColor() with parameters as  the “image” variable and  “cv2.COLOR_BGR2GRAY” :

gray_image = cv2.cvtColor(image, cv2.COLOR_BGR2GRAY)

So, now the variable “gray_image” will hold the gray-scale version of the input image.

Now, to write/save the converted gray-scale image to the hard disk, we use the function “cv2.imwrite()” with parameters as “the name of converted image” and the variable “gray_image” to which the converted image was stored:


So, now if you open the directory where you saved your python code, you can see a new image there : gray_image.png! Wow! :D

Now, to display the original and the gray-scale ,we use function “cv2.imshow()” with parameters as the “window title” and the “image variable” :


Complete Code for GrayScale Image convertor:

# GrayScale Image Convertor

import cv2
image = cv2.imread('ironman.png')
gray_image = cv2.cvtColor(image, cv2.COLOR_BGR2GRAY)
cv2.waitKey(0)                 # Waits forever for user to press any key
cv2.destroyAllWindows()        # Closes displayed windows

#End of Code

Hope you enjoyed this post, feel free to comment and don’t forget to follow my blog! :D

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  1. seascapesaus says:

    Did I see somewhere on wordpress – “code is poetry”? I can only guess at how poetic this is! Amazing.

  2. tintin says:

    thanks ,I was bothering with the code

  3. Spartacus says:

    Where did you get the cv2 import from?

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