Joanna Kus­tra’s por­traits show the depth and in­ten­sity blackand-white can achieve

NPhoto - - Special Feature -

This im­age, ‘San­dra’, is the per­fect ex­am­ple of a mono­chrome por­trait. The back­ground has been al­lowed to dis­ap­pear into a near-solid black, mak­ing a strong, graphic shape from the model’s face. The hor­i­zon­tal shad­ows add a mys­te­ri­ous film noir ef­fect and the eyes have a lu­mi­nous, pen­e­trat­ing qual­ity. There are prac­ti­cal ad­van­tages to shoot­ing por­traits in black-and-white, too. You don’t have to worry about colour bal­ance or mixed light­ing, for a start, and you can subtly ad­just eyes, lips and skin tones by chang­ing the colour mix dur­ing the black-and-white con­ver­sion. It’s also pos­si­ble to push tonal con­trasts much higher, to the point where colour im­ages would sim­ply look harsh.

sa ndra JOANNA KUS­TRA Nikon D80, Nikon 50mm f/ 1.4, 1/60 sec, f/3.5, ISO500

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