Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Week of B&W

It has been quite a week. I decided that I should switch my camera settings to B&W on Sunday and shoot a week of it for my 365. Talk about revelations.

B&W week

Just for a little bit of context, Tim has been to school for photography. Back in the day when people still (gasp) shot film. His camera bag of old holds a medium format Pentax and a spot meter. The camera is all manual and that is what his eye is trained to see. Me? Always been one to sponge knowledge where I can, so I went out and about with him and queried about the Zone System to no end.

Then enter twins, no time or reaction time and enter DSLR. Which he railed against until streaking toddlers and a Canon f1.4 lens. And then we fell in love with digital and have not shot film in ages.

Tim's Shots
These ones are Tim's photos, btw.

He stills rocks the shot because he knows what he is doing. Not lazy like I am, not content to shoot Aperture priority and trust the bo-keh will make it look good. Nope. He shoots true. Even in digital. Especially in B&W because he understands Zone and knows his eye. And me? I still don't know what I am doing, not really.

I was looking over my 365 and noticed that the photos so far were really, er, saturated. I try not to 'fix' stuff too much in processing so I guess all that hot color is what my photographic eye sees. I thought it might be a good challenge to shoot 365 in B&W for a week. And boy, was it a challenge.

Do you know the Zone? Ansel Adams developed it as a way to help identify proper photographic exposure. Sounds dry but then you look at his photos and realize his genius. It is designed mostly for B&W but is applicable along all spectrums, all eyes. And it has made me think so much this week, about what I see, what my camera lens sees, what you see.

This week with my camera brought me to is a new place. A thinking place. Not thinking to get the best shot, because believe me, that was not happening. But a thinking place with my eye, my finger on the button, my composition and my camera.

B&W week II

Taking a picture a day has not been hard (she says 22 days in, haha). But taking a good picture a day. Aye, there's the rub. I'm keeping on because I love what 365 is doing for my drive to shoot photos but switching back to color for now.


--V said...

I hear ya re: the "taking a good picture a day" thing. I think I'm about 70/30 OK pics/Good ones. I suppose it'll come with practice.

I think your photos are fab, by the way.

Kellee said...

I LOVE black and white photography. Sometimes color composition can take away from what you are trying to showcase, and the black and white takes away that noise. I love it, and I love your images. I think you did a great job. Now I'm off to read about Zone! :)