Get the mes­sage across with­out the con­fu­sion of colour

Digital Photograper - - Discover The Secrets Of Black And White -

When it comes to shoot­ing doc­u­men­tary work, black and white is of­ten the best way for­ward. This is partly be­cause so many of the clas­sic doc­u­men­tary and street pho­tos that helped de­fine the genre were cap­tured in the 1950s and 1960s, be­fore colour film be­came more com­mon­place. But black and white’s way of sim­pli­fy­ing the scene means that many pho­tog­ra­phers have stuck with it ahead of colour. This helps the viewer to fo­cus in on what’s ac­tu­ally tak­ing place in the im­age, with fewer vis­ual dis­trac­tions.

An­other ben­e­fit of black and white when it comes to doc­u­men­tary pho­tog­ra­phy is that it en­ables you to present a con­sis­tent look across a se­ries of images that are in­tended to work to­gether to tell a story. This is hugely ben­e­fi­cial when it comes to dis­parate images that may well have been cap­tured in very dif­fer­ent light­ing con­di­tions. Above all else, the work of Mag­num pho­tog­ra­phers such as Don McCullin, David Hurn and Bruce David­son is tes­ta­ment to the en­dur­ing power of black and white when it comes to telling a story.

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