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The Smart Tips And Art Of Black And White Photography

Trying to See in Monochrome Type

The key to the success of black & white photography is try to see the world in black and white sense. It is necessary to understand that not all events or subjects are behoove for black and white photography. There are certain kinds of photographs, which are based on the color for result. Think Steve McCurry’s famous Afghan girl portrait, for example: Bright colors are an integral part of the power of the image.

The success of black and white photographers is they search and select the best looking photos for black and white photo.
Learn to evaluate your subject, try to imagine seeing it in such black and white. (Developed and printed, or, if you use the film) preview the result after treatment of the image with your favorite techniques, such as adding textures and tones. Remember with practice, your vision will be very sharp.

Good advice for users of digital SLR cameras, it is recommended to take picture in RAW format (which by the color of the highest quality black and white conversions can be done anyway), but on the Picture Style (instruction of Canon camera, if you have another brand of camera check your manual) have to change to black and white mode. The picture is in black and white on the LCD display of the camera, and you have all the color information in the RAW file for later implementation.

To help for learning in black and white look, I have included both color and black and white image in all my examples.


Think a wall of an old building, or rusted metal or weathered wood. Each old subject has usually large lots of texture, textures appear in black and white photos very good and smart.

The texture is affected by light. The low light rakes, typical of the golden hour of light at sunrise and sunset, it highlights the texture significantly. The soft lighting of an overcast sky can bring the texture, but may need help in finishing with the help of techniques such as contrast enhancement.

The worst light to the photo texture is harsh light of midday. The flatness of this type of texture hides the light.

This above photo has beautiful statue texture. The light of this photo was very soft, which increased the contrast with the Curves (Ctrl+m) or Level (Ctrl+l) tool in Photoshop CS for the implementation of the texture.

Tonal Contrast

We are accustomed to seeing in color. Black and white are converted from color it become shades of gray. Highlights of color are light color, and dark colors are dark shades. The balance between these colors are called tonal contrast.

Black and white photographers use to get good pictures of tonal contrast.

The above photo, used to create a contrast of colors in a dramatic scene. The sounds of the picture frame and colors creates a striking image.

Shape and Form

The form and shape are two very important attractive elements. Every object has both the form and shape. The form is the way the subject is in two dimensions. A figure like this photo of tree branches, is an example of sharpness a photo.

The form is how the issue is seen in three dimensions. The photos are of two dimensions, and the painters, photographers are the challenge of the three-dimensional objects in the form of two-dimensional.

Black and white, draws attention to the shadows, and flowing lines that describe the shape. Using light to make your designs in three dimensions. Lighting from the side shows the shape of the quality of the shadows. The light in front and behind obscure it. The shape of the old body in this image is revealed by the shadows and reflections in the metal body.


The photography word comes from the Greek word for "paint with light." Photography is the lighting, and the quality of light determines the quality of the photography.
Black and white photography of the freedom to take pictures in all lighting conditions.
The best light is always created by the sun low in the sky. But with the black and white images even in the afternoon and on cloudy days, the lighting conditions for color photography can be.

The secret is adapted to illuminate the subject. Afternoon light, for example, can be best for the architecture, but bad for portraits. An overcast day is ideal for capturing portrait photo, but bad for landscapes.

This below photo was taken at the end of a cloudy day. A soft light is very flattering.

Subjects for Black and White Photography:

The following subjects are very important for Black and White photography.

The absence of color, all concentrate is focused on the eyes and to the face plus all textures are focused on background or cloths.
Like as the below photo, are describable and it is generally used for commercial portrait images.

The old skin or old objects are excellent for black and white photography.
The above photo were taken on cloudy time. Like this type of lighting are very suitable for portrait images. Remember you should avoid direct sunlight, because it makes harsh and ugly shadows to face.

Black and white photography is an effective solution for landscape photo. In landscape photo you will find lots of tones, sharpness and components and of course the smart quality of lighting. See the below photo.


See the big towns and cities; these are full with nice architecture constructed by metal, tiles and glass. Try to find the sharpness against with the sky.
Old building have wonderful weathered interface with lots of texture. Old kingdoms, churches and building tower makes great subject for black and white photography.


Travel and Street Photography
Traveling photography holds the memory and every emotions of a place that you have visited. Black and white photos have timelessness that is very mixable for traveling photography. See the below photo and tell me what you find?

You can see a video I have uploaded about Travel photography.

Still Life

The black and white photography works very well with every sort and every still subject. Without tone of color, the highlight on the sharpness and patterns of the subject, and the quality of lighting looks good in black and white pictures.
Black and white shouts the sharpness of the wings and texture of the background of a photo.


Nudes are the oldest topic for photographers and artist that they recognized. Black and white nude photos are timeless, and by erasing the pattern of color it will help to elevate the matter of subject from something that is dreamy smutty by behaving the naked body or pornography as a smart form.

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