15 September 2014
Three versions of “Morning Light,” Longwood Gardens, Pennsylvania, August 2014
1. Original in Hipstamatic
2. Hipstamatic and PhotoStudio #1
3. Hipstamatic and PhotoStudio #2
Let me know which you prefer and why.
Black-and-white photography has an uncanny power to recreate reality. While a fully technicolor image may seem the better choice to most, for me monochrome strips away distractions, focuses on details and improves my own ability to “see.”
While strolling through the newly-created meadow at Longwood Gardens, I was led to a bridge that sandwiched me between a wooded haven. The morning golden hour was spritely accentuating the foliage on the trees. I stopped, stared and panned through each side.
While the soft greens of the trees and sparkling light were striking in color, the conversion to monochrome gave me so much more to contemplate. Contrasts and tones, light and shadows exaggerated what could be lost by a scene that provided a different kind of attention to elements.
The light pushed reflections, forcing the conscious to recognize what could easily have been missed. When you stroll through such diverse natural settings that are cultivated and maintained by human hand and nature, it’s hard to absorb the immensity of beauty and grandeur. Some of it being so tiny that its kept hidden from voyeurs. Other visual aspects overwhelm the senses.
And so whatever and whenever I can appreciate those kinds of moments, I feel a calm and quiet that nourishes. Stilling a certain slice of nature and later revisiting that frozen scene can bring back initial responses. It also can act as an instigator to see the same composition with greater examination.
In the Lens section are examples of my interpretation of the original taken in Hipstamatic, and then I processed two in PhotoStudio. Each app made certain parts of the whole more or less prevalent. Other parts allowed details to fade into obscurity. The process became a dance of the visual.
I like to play with images that are more white than black or black than white. To frame negative and positive spaces can create an energetic push-and-pull within the monochromatic results–results that can give a new spin on the character of the subject.
That reversal of our visual field (changing the black tones to white or the white ones to black) redefines patterns and shadows, and provides a chance to view in a circular fashion rather than linear. These experiments only lead to another and another, forcing the synapses to flourish in an invented world that is really real.
Tip of the Week: Clearly, one of the best sites to peruse photography and the work of world-recognized photographers’ work is the National Geographic website. It is stacked with so many layers that one could drift there for years. Their staff of photographers produce some of the most magnificent depictions of nature and human nature. Click here to view some of their “Photo of the Day” section that is devoted to Black and White. Whether taken with a Smartphone or DSLR or SLR, these images inspire.
View other entries for today’s challenge: Black and White
If you’d like to join the Photo Challenge, please click here for details. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming Photo Challenges:
1st Monday: Nature.
2nd Monday: Macro.
3rd Monday: Black and White.
4th Monday Challenger’s Choice (Pick One: Abstraction, Animals, Architecture, Food Photography, Night Photography, Objects, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).
5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.