A Beginner's Guide to Black and White Street Photography

A Beginner's Guide to Black and White Street Photography

What others say:

Martin Tolley: 
In a psychology class about visual perception which I took 40+ years ago, I remember being told that the evolutionary purpose of colour was to make clear the shape and location of objects and to make detecting those objects easier. Without colour vision our perception system needs to work harder and in a different way to achieve the same end. My experience of shooting B&W in camera and looking through the viewfinder is that I become more aware of shapes and textures. We need those elements to work out what it is we are seeing - colour allows us to see the boundaries and edges or objects without actually "seeing them" or being aware of them. So I feel that shooting B&W or just looking at the world through a B&W viewfinder (even if you only do it sometimes) will make you a better observer of the world, and in photography, the better you observe the more you can record. And again my experience is that doing B&W photography actually makes you a better colour photographer, it makes you more aware of the interaction between colour and shape, which often we aren't aware of, or we just lose in everyday life where we are surrounded by colours. An episode of absence of a stimulus makes us more perceptive of its presence when it returns.

Jolyon Patten:

Excellent shots there, Kebs, and amazing that that was your first time trying out B&W. Also, I've always thought of the Philippines as a pretty hard place (especially Green Belt!) to shoot as there is such a riot of colour and shapes there always. But you've cut all that out ("Avoid distraction"!). Hats off to you.

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