Black and White

One blog I follow The obvious and hidden has beautiful black and white images. I feel inspired and at the same time reluctant to leave the medium of colour. In this the digital era it is so easy to move from colour to black and white and back. Autumn is like a second spring when every leaf turns into a flower, my heart thrills at the colours of the changing leaves like natural fireworks.

leaves

leaves

Black and white can accentuate images with distinct lines, shapes and patterns – colour can be a distraction away from such compositional elements.

Autumn in black and white

Autumn in black and white

We naturally see the world in colour, so viewing everyday objects rendered in monochrome is often a novelty for me. Yesterday, I visited a local cemetery, my camera has creative settings such as “dynamic monochrome” and “one point colour” (this is black and white and one chosen colour). These statues were naturally white and black so rendering the whole image black and white was no great adjustment of the scene.

Vake Cemetery Statues

Vake Cemetery Statue

019

Woman weeping

Black and white can make the image appear as if it was taken in a bygone era many years ago, rather than just yesterday or last week.

It gives the image a more timeless quality, it can also be considered “cool”, though I’m not sure why. Pictures of Hollywood Stars from the past in black and white look “cool” (think of those iconic black and white images of James Dean, Marilyn Monroe or Marlon Brando).

I mentioned “one point colour” , this would seem a halfway house between monochrome and colour.

grave using one point colour (here red)

grave using one point colour (here red)

The red of the flowers and some red on the gate is seen in an otherwise monochrome image.

colour

colour

black and white

black and white

Autumn Leaves (one point colour)

Autumn Leaves (one point colour)

Zaporozhets wreck in colour

Zaporozhets wreck in colour

Zaporozhets in balck and white

Zaporozhets in black and white

I think I need to experiment more with monochrome. Photographers, for what reasons would you choose to make images in black and white?

6 comments

  1. Wonderful captures Jim, I like your eye ☺ on a side note I’ve actually been to Tbilisi back in 1990 before they won their independence. Also travelled to the old capital Signaki, spent a large part of our time there. To go back now and experience the changes would be quite something. What brought you to Georgia?

    1. I came to Tbilisi as a tourist in 2008. I was invited to a wedding, where I met Khatuna, we chatted and danced, the following day she showed me around Tbilisi. When I returned to England, I stayed in touch with Khatuna and returned to Tbilisi in 2009 and we got married. I had been teaching English in England and before then in France so it was easy enough to work as an English teacher in Tbilisi. We have visited Sighnaghi a couple of times, a very picturesque town.

      1. Oh! A love story ☺ congratulations on your 5th wedding anniversary this year! We celebrate our 5th on December 18th. Quite an amazing ride. Thank you for sharing your story. I look forward to continuing the conversation here.

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