Sunday, 13 January 2013

Festival of the Belly Button

Taken August 2012

It took me a long while to realise that an image that worked well in colour, would not necessarily convert well to black'n'white. For me, a monochrome image works if I incorporate light, or line, or perspective. Or all three, but that is getting greedy. Light is the trickiest of these to capture. I will leave that until later in the week. For starters, I want to show what I have learnt about line and perspective. I loved the post and rail fence, its ruggedness, its naturalness. But my approach was wrong. A fence like this requires perspective, or texture. I had neither. At the station I had line, perspective, AND light.

Taken February 2010
Click here to view other contributions to the inaugural CDP Festival of the Belly Button

27 comments:

Peter said...

A good lesson for me, a superb composition.

diane b said...

Glad to see you back. I like both shots but the line in the first one does drag your eye into the photo.

Gail said...

Hi Julie,

Great shots especially the second.
Glad you are back!

Chrissy Brand said...

Interesting thoughts Julie, and so true about shooting for a b&w shot or a colour one- a different process in the head is required!

Rae Walter said...

Great to see that you are positing again Julie. Love your top shot and the sharing of your B&W photo experiences.

brattcat said...

interesting points of contemplation. hope you are well.

Kris said...

B/W as subject, good choice!
The newer shot would be something I'd like for my gallery :)


Stefan Jansson said...

I never shoot in black and white, but I have been trying my hand at creating some monochrome images from my archives. This winter I have gone through some of the portraits, and found a few that worked okay in black and white. I totally agree with you when it comes to light.

TheChieftess said...

Part of what makes the first shot better than the second is that the lines pull you into the shot...where as the fence blocks you... There's much more interesting contrast in the top shot too...nicely done and well chosen and thought out!!!

Julie said...

Peter, Diane ad Gail: Thank you for your comment. I don't know that the first one is a 'great' shot, but I did learn something in my hobby between the two.

Julie said...

Chrissy, I agree that a different process in the head is required. I go around with my camera and a little view-finder appears in front of my eye. No joking!

Julie said...

Rae, Brattcat & Kris, thank you for your good wishes and for your comment. B&W is a challenge.

Julie said...

Steffe, I never shoot in B&W either, but I know the moment that I square up a potential B&W in the landscape. I will do another entry which is portraits and light, tomorrow. Light is important in colour, but essential in B&W. IMHO.

Julie said...

Kathryn (Chieftess): I had not thought about the fence actually blocking the eye, but you are quite right. There is nowhere for the eye to go, nothing for it to explore. So, I need to make a B&W shot where the lines are across the image like they are here. What will make THAT sort of shot work ... light perhaps? Many thanks for your comment.

Rose ~ from Oz said...

Yes! I do see what you mean. This is a wonderful learning post for me - but will I retain what I've learned!?
The station shot really is sensational.

Julie said...

Thank you, rose. Go out and experiment. There are sooo many lines of perspective in our natural environment, we just have to train our eyes to see it.But I always find that to retain new information, I have to use it!!


Jim said...

I haven't tried photographing in B&W but after seeing these maybe I should.

freefalling said...

Hey!
Where have you been??!!

Ann said...

Great contrast and lines in the first one. Its really interesting how some things that you think will work well in b&w don't when you convert them. I am enjoying trying to work it all out and getting a lot better at seeing what won't work. Then there's the fun of the conversion and working out how best to do it.

Joe said...

Your explanations of the Black & White or Colour conundrum make a lot of sense Julie. I often reluctant to go monochrome when there are so many colours to brighten up or world. Great to see your post. Cheers J.

Joan Elizabeth said...

I love monocrhome but as you say it is a mind shift to shoot consistently good images. So I pretty much stick to colour and if I see an image has enough contrast to pull off B&W I will convert it to see what it's like.

I agree your B&W images took a major leap forward a while ago, must have been when the light went on in your head.

Tanya said...

love the shot at the station!

Buck said...

I didn't get it until the Chieftess commented. A wonderful lesson for me!

Virginia said...

From what i"ve seen over the years Julie, you rarely if ever miss.
V

LONDONLULU said...

Both are beautiful, but - like others - this has been a wonderful lesson to me too! I have so much to learn...

Ineke said...

I see what you mean, good one

Mo said...

I like the first photo, it is stronger and takes your eyes through the whole image.