Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Black and White (Photographic Puzzle*)

20 February 2017


Taken in Camera+ and edited in Snapseed, FX Photo Studio and Pixlr

Afternoon Light + Afternoon Reflection; Copyright © 2017 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

Grouping of Trees in Afternoon Light Photomontage; Copyright © 2017 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

Click onto image to enlarge. Let me know your response to this photomontage. Prints are available upon request.


In the early morning of my life the world was seemingly gentle, even as my naïveté ruled. Still, eventually the crack in the cosmos revealed itself. Light flew this way and that until its meaning resonated. As I evolved, so did my sense of nature’s omnipresence and omniscience. Without question the natural world became and remains my inspiration.

The image of the tree grouping in the Lens section has a patina that exudes: Mother Nature’s hope (light), mystery (umbra), bounty (trees), lore (the path) aesthetics (embellishments), fusion (black and white), symbolism (cycle of life), tranquility (a spiritual landscape), and wonder (effects and marvel). Tree formations connote adventure, interdependence and silence that offer ceremonious choices and reverential awe.

The composite image also represents the human condition, and is as much a photographic puzzle* as an illusion for the senses. It’s a scene that under the certain conditions could be experienced in dreams or reality or both. Our lives are filled with details and molded by the actual and the possible, which are building blocks in our life’s journey.

We spend our days and nights imagining in color and sometimes in black-and-white, trying to grow into a vision of our inner and outer selves. Personal evolution can be glacial or in bolts and jolts. Still, the mood of monochrome forces us to evaluate on a deeper level, being seduced by fewer distractions and energized by a subtle freedom from complexities of technicolor.

This black-and-white conversion is parallel to my internal ideas, which mirror the exact moment of inception. For sure, my photographic puzzle reflects my voice of many layers that shouts with intention to be heard.

* Photographic Puzzle © copyright 2017 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

Tip of the Week:

Quotes about black-and-white:

“I’ve been forty years discovering that the queen of all colors is black.” – Henri Matisse,  French artist (1869-1954)

“Black and white are the colors of photography. To me they symbolize the alternatives of hope and despair to which mankind is forever subjected.” – Robert Frank, American photographer (b. 1924)

“When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in black and white, you photograph their souls!” ― Ted Grant, Canadian photojournalist (b. 1929)

“I work in colour sometimes, but I guess the images I most connect to, historically speaking, are in black and white. I see more in black and white – I like the abstraction of it.”― Mary Ellen Mark, American photographer (1940-2015)

“Black and white photography is truly quite a ‘departure from reality,’ and the transition from one aspect of visual magic to another was not as complete as many imagine.” Ansel Adams, American photographer (1902-1984).

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 would like to buy a print of any of my photographs or have any questions, please view the Contact Information found on the masthead. Thank you.

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, Photomontage, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).

5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.

This entry was posted in Black-and-White Photography, Digital Art, Mobile Photography, Nature Photography, Photography, Photomontage, Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

44 Responses to Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Black and White (Photographic Puzzle*)

  1. MoJo says:

    I know that you did this a while ago, but it’s stellar. Love love love it.

  2. This is stunning, Sally. My walls are full of art, a small gallery in this old house, framed photos, paintings, sculpture pieces, and all have stories…you know me and stories… I wish I had a place for this one.

  3. Those quotes are superb – especially Grant’s. Interestingly, I have read another famous painter (perhaps Van Gogh) say they never use black, because nothing is truly black. Great montage. Your work is so inspiring. I admire your creativity and exploration.

  4. Tina Schell says:

    Your interest in merging multiple shots has really evolved Sally. This one is quite striking!

  5. Maria F. says:

    Very surrealist and dramatic.

  6. badfish says:

    I thought you’d gone infra-red on us, but no, eh…it’s B&W??? It is really a magnificent shot, love it! But black is the KING of colors.

  7. thirdeyemom says:

    Beautiful Sally. The photo is extraordinary and the words of course are equally poetic. I too felt for many years that I had a certain naiveté in my youth. A lot has changed as I’ve aged and also as I’ve left my sheltered bubble and have seen more of the world.

  8. lumar1298 says:

    Very pretty and mysterious…

  9. it is so mysterious! and your interpretation of it all!

  10. As I’m late to the comment party, all the words I would have chosen have been used. I love this shot (or combination of shots), Sally. It’s other-worldly.


  11. Aquileana says:

    So beautiful, dear Sally!!!!
    I couldn´t agree more with you when you say: “the mood of monochrome forces us to evaluate on a deeper level, being seduced by fewer distractions and energized by a subtle freedom from complexities of technicolor”… I sometimes “think” in black and white. I am not sure if it an unconcious mental process or if it is voluntary. Same way, I have dreams in which the characters (me included!) speak in English which is my second language.
    I think that our minds are boundless. And so is the creativity!.
    Love your post my friend… have a great week. Love! 🍀☘️

  12. pattimoed says:

    Gorgeous, Sally! Wonderful work. It resonates on many levels.

  13. Su Leslie says:

    Beautiful, mysterious image Sally; and lovely lyrical words to accompany it.

  14. Such a dreamlike photo. It’s really beautiful.

  15. restlessjo says:

    I love an ethereal look! And such great quotes, Sally 🙂 Wishing you a good week.

  16. Angeline M says:

    An exquisite photo that you’ve created, Sally; and your thoughts today resonate.

  17. Allan G. Smorra says:

    This is a beautiful photo, Sally. I like the way it weaves its way from light to dark through that mysterious fog in the middle. The transition is subtle, but dramatic.

  18. Amy says:

    Beautifully done, Sally! I really like the result.

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