Color or Black and White?

June 5, 2017

One question photographers frequently ask if why I choose to post, print or display some images in color and others in black and white. 


 The answer is that it often depends on the story I feel the image is trying to tell and whether colors add to or take away from that story.


In the image above I like the juxtaposition of the glossy latex boots with the bright blue hot pants. (The booty isn't bad either then is it?) Crystal wondered if the two would go together and I think the image/ with a touch of added grain, is kind of fun in an updated, pinup sort of respect...


The image below is a different image of the same subject with an infrared overlay and I love the dreamy quality of the leaves outside, etc, along with the slightly ethereal nature of the glow around her body. 


 In the old days this would have required cumbersome infrared film but these days can be achieved with a Lightroom filter. I also have a point and shoot with a hot-rodded infra-red sensor and sometimes carry only that when I head out for something fun.


I encourage all photographers to use black and white while editing to check to make sure skin tones are correct, etc.. Rocking the image back and forth between black and white and color will also guide the eye in different directions and paying attention to this will make a big difference in how you choose to render the final image.


In the end it's obviously up to you. Enjoy. Play. Share your work. Listen to people you trust. Happy Shooting...


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