16 May 2016
Let me know which you prefer. Click on image to enlarge, which takes you to another page. If you decide to leave a comment, please return to this page.
Patterns are just one of the enticements that share a camaraderie between architecture and black-and-white photography. Elements in each collide playfully and seriously. As light bounces and weaves in and out of angles, forms, lines, textures, and tones, it becomes a sorcerer for the architect’s imagination and the photographer’s.
For the architect the site must be studied to determine the presence or absence of the day’s natural light. And then artificial light is added to the mixture. For the photographer the entire universe is a canvas, awaiting interpretation.
For decades my admiration for black-and-white photography has continued to escalate, and that adulation shapes my way of seeing. In my own work light indeed is a sage who clearly nudges my decision to take an image or not. And it is natural light that compels me to discover elements that can be best expressed in monochrome.
To imagine a subject without color is singularly difficult. Of course, some sightings will only work in technicolor. It takes practice, practice, practice to negate the color, and in the mind’s eye replace it with monochromatic shades and tints of black and white.
A sunny well-lit day is not the signifier of strong black-and-white scenes. Nor is a rain-swept vista in grey and whites. Neither may translate with a punch in black and white.
In truth even the image that seems to be “the one” can disappoint. Inevitably, those that in reality are perceived to be great candidates, are not. Some taken for the possibilities that visual appeal exists, might be the ones that are worthy. Instincts prevail, and yet they do not.
Graphic qualities, textures, shadows, negative and positive spaces pique my attention. Dancing light carving and curving encourages my interest. And architecture is particular suited to these characteristics.
In the Lens section are two images taken on my recent trip to the West Coast. Each has qualities that make me stop, stare and still the moment. One is complex in character; the other simple and straightforward. Each has visual elements, especially patterns, that shore the reason black-and-white photography continues to be my inspiration.
Tip of the Week:
“Hélène Binet has emerged as one of the leading architectural photographers in the world. Every time Hélène Binet takes a photograph, she exposes architecture’s achievements, strength, pathos and fragility.” (Daniel Libeskind, Polish-American architect)
Swiss-French photographer Hélène Binet specializes in architectural photography that finds the unique within the unique. London-based Binet is known for some of the elements that push my creative edge: light, shadow and texture. Her images find those places and spaces that are intimate and tell a narrative about their architectural design and features. To read an article (“Dancing in the Dark: The Architectural Photography of Helene Binet,” 21 May 2013, by Matt McCann) from The New York Times’ column “Lens: Photography, Video and Visual Journalism,” click here. Binet is known to photograph the old and the new, and uses that work to honor two remarkable human inventions: architecture and photography.
View other entries for this week’s challenge:
As always I welcome comments about this post or any part of my blog. My photographs for the mobile photography challenge are taken with an iPhone 6.
If you’d like to join this Mobile Photography Challenge, please click here for details and history of the challenge. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming 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, Panorama, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).
5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.