February 14, 2012

Black and White or Colour?

By In Photo Manipulation

Following on from the ‘obviously photoshopped’ image post HootsManua (aka Rob) on twiter asked “Don’t you find the tinkery involved in making the images detracts from the art of photography?”

I disagree. In the past such tinkering would have been undertaken in the dark room. The power of todays digital manipulation tools just makes it easier, gives a huge range of effects to apply and leads inevitably to ‘art’ type shots (such as these on 500px by Piotr Krol or Magdalena Wanli, which I happen to adore). It is all about the vision that the photographer wishes to impart, whether it is to ‘cover up’ failings in the original shot (you still need a decent image to start with though as a crap photo will always be a crap photo) or to emphasis a feeling, a mood or a certain aspect of the light. It may also be that the people I find I am following on 500px are edging towards the ‘Fine Art’ category rather than straight photography and this is influencing my own ‘creativeness’ or ‘vision’.

Here is more tinkering. Colour or black and white? A more acceptable amount of manipulation is altering images to a black and white state. I can’t decide if this set works better with the absence of colour or even if they are ‘that good’ to start with (the couple in the alley shot are blurred for example).

All of these were taken in the centre of Orvieto, Italy just a few short steps from the central, 14th century Roman Catholic cathedral.

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  1. Jeanne @ CookSister! February 14, 2012

    The second and third I prefer in B&W, most of the others I prefer in colour. Although the 1st one to me works in both! As you know (!) I am not a huge fan of using Photoshop for “arty” effects, mostly just basic work on brightness, contrast, white balance & saturation – but to each his own!

  2. andrew February 14, 2012

    I agree Jeanne that if an image is overdone there is a tendancy for it to become either ugly or an illustration rather than a photograph; but its a tool and the end result is what matters!

  3. Bill Eyer February 16, 2012

    Those are some great images, really love the “alley” shot, well done! Your point about darkroom manipulation versus digital enhancements is well said, and the point is hammered home very well.



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