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Black and White

B+W 1/5
B+W 2/5
B+W 3/5
B+W 4/5
B+W 5/5

Earlier this week a Facebook friend invited me to join a 5-day black and white photography challenge. Black and white is, indeed, a challenge for me because I am so in love with color!

I took her up on it, though, because I have been considering doing a month of b+w for November, despite it being outside of my comfort zone. I thought this would be a good trial run.

The verdict? I am happy with most of my photos, and I have to say I enjoyed looking for subjects where color took a back seat to texture, lines, and composition. I am always on the lookout for good composition, but with color photography I find that I don’t think as much about texture or other elements that provide visual interest. I usually let the colors lead me, and the rest is often a happy accident. Or, if I want to give myself a little credit, I could call it intuition.

By the way, you may have noticed that a few of the images are not truly black and white. They are monochrome, but they have a slightly warmer tone than true black and white. This was not intentional in the first two photos, and in fact, I didn’t even notice my mistake until I went to process the third image. I have to say, though, I kind of like it. I liked it enough to dial a bit of warmth back in to image 4, albeit with a lighter hand.

If you’re a photo-processing nerd (like me) and would like to know how I managed to accidentally get a warmer black and white look, I used the Black + White section of the Basic panel in Lightroom’s Develop module, and tweaked all of the settings to get a monochromatic image I liked. I had forgotten, though, that by default I have LR set up to add a small bit of yellow to the highlights in the Split Tone panel. Oops!

One thing about black and white photography: I feel like I should take pictures of old things. Because b+w has such a vintage vibe to me, I’m drawn to capturing images of things that are either truly old, or have an antique vibe to them. I’m rather surprised with myself that I didn’t photograph my old typewriter. Guess I can save that for November…

What do you think about black and white photography? Do you find yourself drawn to it, or is it all about color for you?

3 thoughts on “Black and White

  1. I love black and white…its popularity seems to wax and wane but it’s classic and my favorite!

  2. Lovely shots! But I think the first photo is the most strikingly beautiful.

  3. Loved the pictures! There is just something so pretty about B&W photos 🙂

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