Try out three more black & white clas­sics.

Tech­niques guar­an­teed to make the most of the monochrome aes­thetic.

Practical Photography (UK) - - Magical Mono -

1 In­crease the fo­cus

Wildlife shots may not be the ob­vi­ous choice for a monochrome treat­ment, but they can work re­ally well. Black & white pho­tog­ra­phy’s unique abil­ity to strip away all the dis­tract­ing colours that abound in na­ture can re­ally make a wildlife sub­ject ‘pop’ when it might oth­er­wise by lost in the scene – par­tic­u­larly in the case of those an­i­mals that en­joy some nat­u­ral cam­ou­flage. In this shot, a red squir­rel has been turned ‘grey’ with a fan­tas­tic monochrome edit that re­ally sep­a­rates the sub­ject from the en­vi­ron­ment, uses the graphic na­ture of black & white to draw the view­ers’ at­ten­tion to the an­i­mal’s eye and adds an al­most metal­lic di­men­sion to the re­flec­tion in the wa­ter.

2 Seek out tex­tures

When black & white nat­u­rally breaks an image down to sim­ple line and form, it opens up a world of pos­si­bil­i­ties for any­one seek­ing ab­strac­tions. Tex­tures also come alive in mono and an ab­stract image that has strong tex­tu­ral el­e­ments is a per­fect sub­ject for a black & white edit. This sim­ple shot of leaf lit­ter works won­der­fully thanks to the tonal range in the scene that in­forms the com­po­si­tion, while the tex­tures re­in­force the graphic el­e­ment and work in har­mony with the flat light­ing.

3 Em­brace min­i­mal­ism

Whether you’re shoot­ing ar­chi­tec­ture, as above, a still life or a land­scape, black & white pro­vides the per­fect medium for a min­i­mal­ist look. Keep things sim­ple in your mono shots and you’ll be re­warded with stun­ningly clean and in­cred­i­bly pleas­ing im­ages. This shot re­lies on strong graph­i­cal lines, great light that picks out the fo­cal point in the scene, and a lim­ited pal­ette of tones that break the sub­ject up into light, dark and mid­tones. Black & white can make min­i­mal­ist art of the most mun­dane ob­jects.




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