Look deeper

Prolific writer of photography tips Jim Harmer shares some guides in his article 15 Tips for Stunning Black and White Photography. I will just list some of them and urge you to go over his very enlightening write-up.


Here is a partial listing:

  • Shoot in RAW.
  • To visualize in black and white, only pay attention to lines, shadows, and shapes.
  • Pay special attention to noise.
  • Look for contrast.
  • Find a wide range of grays.
  • Watch for texture.
  • Look for patterns.
  • Long exposures love black and white.
  • B&W isn’t a replacement for bad lighting, but it can soften the blow.

With today’s digital cameras and powerful image editing programs, it is very easy to experiment in black and white. Some photographers find their “voice”, vision and style through this classic medium. It forces photographers to “see” more and look deeper for fine nuances and interesting characteristics in subjects, as opposed to shooting haphazardly in color, and letting the color element speak for the whole image. You have the tools of discernment and insight in black and white photography. Use them skillfully.


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