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Norwich Black and white November_05

Raw Black and White Photography

Whilst I am a believer that film is not dead, especially when it comes to the sexy noir grainy effect that only film can reproduce, with the nights drawing in I decided to walk home with my camera tonight.

Black and White Street Photography in Norwich

In the first year of my Architectural degree, I remember a lecturer teaching me to admire the way that space alters in different conditions. Our perception of the haptic qualities differ at night, especially when it is wet.

we see a different space in black and white

Our eyes pick up glossy reflections in black and white as the diluting ambient light is removed. I love the rural/unprocessed qualities of black and white photography. One of my favourite images is shot by Craig Fleming at a jewish wedding (I think) that appeared in a Pro Photo Magazine back in the summer. It captured  guests at a wedding dancing around the bride and groom shot with a shutter speed around 1/15 Sec. Nothing was pin sharp, but the fluid dynamic around the couple was enhanced by the black and white photography. My eyes where instantly drawn to the most important part of the photograph.

Couple in Black and white near Tombland in Norwich

What I’m trying to say is that photography is not always about a perfect image. Quality photography is about conveying an emotional message. I feel that this is sometimes done best in black and white because of the clarity and contrast. None of these images have had anything more than a little boost in contrast. All of them are pretty much off the camera, converted from RAW. Shot with picture control set to monochrome and iso 4000 for the low light, I let the camera optimise the colour rendition ready for black and white.

Norwich Black and white November_08

It was real smash and grab street photography and I feel that the fact that whilst none of the images have recognisable faces in, the mystical quality adds to the emotive response.



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