Thinking In Black And White

I regularly shoot in color and my images are always in the RAW format. That said however, if the resulting photograph has a chance of looking good in black and white, NIK Silver Effects Pro is trotted out to process it. The image above is a good example of what I mean.

It started out as a decent image of a down and out guy scratching lottery tickets in front of a real estate office. The light was good but the ghastly purple color of the office window design was horrible. Changing the image to monochrome was a revelation! All of a sudden the window’s purple tinted squares became lovely shades of gray and the figure’s rumpled raincoat was set off well by the widow’w short straight lines.

Hard Streets

Most of us take walking for granted. Then there are those brave souls who struggle with this seeming simple act.

More About Color

To continue our conversation about color, started in the last post, here’s a photograph developed both in color and black and white. In my opinion, yours certainly may differ, the monochrome version packs more punch.

The lady’s hand gesture, hat and open mouth tell a story that don’t need any color embellishment.

Some Thoughts About Color

I’ve heard photography pundits say, quite often in fact, that the use of color in a photograph can be seen as a crutch used to disguise poor composition. I agree that’s certainly possible but, I would contend that sometimes color becomes so powerful it can be thought of as the subject itself.

For instance, last Sunday while walking through Boston Public Garden, I came upon this balloon seller sitting behind his wares. I snapped off a quick shot and in Lightroom I cut down on the exposure and changed the format to square. In this case I would contend the color is the photo’s primary subject. (Unless of course baloons are your thing.)

Black & White vs Color

The simple act of looking at something can be amazingly complex. As photographers we look all the time but often we see something entirely different from those who view are work. This photograph started out in color. The column was red and the boys shirts were different colors. I felt that version took away from the fixed gazes of the two subjects, but the juxtaposition of the tones and hues were interesting. Though I chose to eliminate the color, I’m sure that others would have preferred it.