I just won an award with this photo. I'm not saying that to brag, honestly I'm not. I just wanted to talk about photography a little bit today, since I am still (and forever) learning. And I think maybe I might have gotten something a little bit right.
I'm not absolutely certain why black and white photography is calling to me, but it kind of is. More and more often, as I am literally snapping a shot I am also making the decision whether that particular photo would be better served in colour or black and white. And often, recently, the answer is black and white. I have the photo above in both B&W and colour. And honestly is it eons better without the distraction of colour. I will show you.
Here it is in colour:
It's the exact same picture. But my eye is going everywhere in the colour photo, the various levels of back ground (layers: fence, trees, boats, buildings) and those wonderful repetitive patterns in the shadows, chairs and fence are almost lost. It's not a bad photo in colour, it's just improved by removing the colour.
Though I suppose I could argue that grey, black and white are actual colours. But it's referred to as black & white. Ok, let's say that rather than a photo without colour, it is a photo of limited colour.
I'm not saying that every picture is better in black and white because that's simply not true at all. Here is an experiment that clearly shows the colour photo is the better one:
In the instance above, while the black and white picture is, ummmm, interesting, it's the colour photo that has life. The colour photo is very obviously the better picture in this instance. But there are very definitely times when less (colour) is more.
At first, I didn't know why I preferred one b&w photo over another. But I studied on it, considered it, thought about it, analyzed it, ruminated over it and eventually actually started doing some reading about the topic (when all else fails, read the directions eh?). Here are a few of my better black & white pictures:
Turns out that my instincts were correct. There were very clear reasons why some of my attempts at b&w photography were more satisfactory to me than others. There are guildlines to this kind of photography (as there are to every kind of photography). And what I seem to have learned here is this:
1) The light needs to be clean and strong to create the impactful shadows that are make-or break 2) The subject needs to be simple and specific. If there is too much going on, it's just a mess with no central theme. 3) Sometimes black & white photography affords a fun vintage feel that is one step beyond what you would have with the same photo in colour. 4) Good Strong Contrasting elements are important. Here are examples of me doing it correctly:
and then incorrectly. Clearly less successful photos:
I still have SO MUCH to learn. But that's part of the fun.
Ok I'm done talking about photography for today. Class dismissed.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.