Which of your photos would look great converted to B&W?

Top: LA Metro train station   Bottom: The Parthenon replica, Nashville, TN

Top: LA Metro train station   Bottom: The Parthenon replica, Nashville, TN

In general, a photo with distinct shapes separated by high contrast would look great as a black and white image. Both of the photos above work very well as B&W's because they contain distinct shapes of relatively high contrast.

The blue image (an LA Metro train station) has the dark perpendicular bars, while the architectural image (the full scale replica of the Parthenon in Nashville) has the darker long narrow ceiling that stands out from the lighter walls.

However, something else has to be considered. You must ask yourself, "How important is the color to the image?" You as the artist, the creator of the photo, must answer that yourself. Look at both images side by side and go with how you feel. Which version moves you more? 

Regarding these photos, I prefer the blue image to it's B&W version because the color makes the photo. I love the blues too much to let them go!

The Parthenon photo could go either way for me. I like the sepia tone look of the original (although it's actually full color), but the B&W creates more simplified shapes.

Take a look at your photos and choose one or two to convert to B&W, then compare and notice how each image makes you feel.

If you want to have some fun taking B&W photos with your smartphone, look into my Smartphone Photo Classes.  

If you're serious about getting into B&W art photography with your DSLR camera, I provide individual instruction and can customize a program just for you.


Look Out for Objects Stuck in Heads!

That hurts! What is that silver rectangle stuck in my head?

That hurts! What is that silver rectangle stuck in my head?

Ahh! That's better.

Ahh! That's better.

So this is my first newsletter for my photography website! Yay!

I thought I'd start things off with a photo tip:

Don't leave your friends and family with objects stuck in their heads!

One of the most common mistakes we make is photographing people with things jabbed into their skulls. :) These brain injuries often go unchecked because we are so focused on the faces in a shot.

However, if we remove an object from someone's head we discover that the person stands out from the background which creates a more pleasing and uncluttered shot. Plus they survive.

The most common objects found stuck in heads are trees and parts of buildings.

These things hurt. I've injured people this way too. If you're photographing someone with trees behind them and you have no choice, move yourself or your subject so that their head is between trees or choose a dark area to center their head on. This sounds torturous for some reason but it actually helps!  I cover this and more in my Smartphone Photo Classes.

Now go ahead... look back through your recent photos and see all of those loved ones you've injured. Don't be too hard on yourself though.

It's time to heal and come together as better photographers!

Happy shooting!