Project: Black and White, Strength of Interpretation

The course notes suggest that black and white allows more radical adjustments to the tonal range. These pictures explore how this can be applied by making some high contrast, high key and low key versions.

Hand Cart


From this I made high contrast and high key versions in both black and white and colour:





The colour variations only seem to accentuate the blue colour cast in the shadow. This is not so obvious in the original image.

In both high contrast images there is loss of detail in shadow and highlights but this does not seem to detract from the black and white version.

The high key colour version is dominated by the blue cast. This was shot in jpeg, not raw so the cast was difficult to remove, but it makes no difference to the monochrome one.



From this one I made a high contrast and low key versions:





Although the high contrast has increased the richness of the colour in the colour version, in both I felt I was able to take the processing further in the black and white versions.

Pit Head


For this one I produced both high key and low key versions in addition to the high contrast one:







This is a picture whose timeless quality suits black and white. Again there is a richness in the colour, especially in the blue sky in the low key one but again the limits are pushed more successfully in black and white.

This exercise would seem to suggest that there can be more creative potential with the ability to process an image to a greater degree in the tonal range with black and white than with colour. This might be true of some images and subjects but the truth is that black and white processing is another string in the bow of image processing. This exercise has shown how this can be exploited.

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