Discover the drama of black and white
Sometimes you need to see the world in black and white! Rod Lawton back to basics with his Nikon D-SLR’s Monochrome Picture Control
subject matter itself. Also, if you remove colour from the equation, it becomes much easier to explore shapes, lines and tones and turn them into satisfying compositions.
This is where your Nikon D-SLR can help you. It has a Monochrome Picture Control which turns your photographs into black and white and can help you visualise the world as shades of grey.
We went to Broadway Tower in the Cotswolds to show how this works. The gritty textures and simple shapes made a great subject for black and white, even on a dull and overcast day.
Apart from changing the camera’s Picture Control, shooting black and white is technically no different to We see the world in colour, we respond to colours and today’s Nikon D-SLRs can reproduce colour with amazing fidelity and depth. So why shoot in black and white?
Black-and-white photography can be used to give pictures an ‘antique’ look, but it has creative benefits too. The lack of colour means it’s already one step removed from reality, so that people are more likely to look at the way you’ve made the photograph and less likely to be distracted by the
If you remove colour, it becomes much easier to explore lines and tones
shooting colour. What you do have to change is how you ‘see’ and compose pictures. Monochrome photography depends on shapes, tones and textures, but most of us are attracted by colour, so it takes a little while to learn how to switch this off – you have to change the mode in your head as well as the one on your camera!
The simplest shapes often make the best subjects, and you should make the most of contrasts in both tone and lighting. Finally, don’t expect to get every image perfect in-camera. Even the greatest monochromeshooting photographers needed a little help in the darkroom…