The Grey Scale of Black and White
Black and white photography will always have an extraordinary appeal to
its viewers. It always stands out among all the other pictures. But how
come we canít produce the same effect when weíre the one taking these
black and white photos? The desired effect for black and white and
photos are not that easy to create as other may seem to think so.
With our technology today, the use of digital camera is conquering the
whole medium of photography. However, the simplicity and the easiness of
using digital cameras canít guarantee that youíll be able to create
black and white photos with its extraordinary appeal. Before you can
produce quality black and white pictures, you have to learn several
One of the first things you have to learn about black and white
photography is good texture. Good quality of black and white photos will
only be produced with good texture. Texture when it comes to black and
white photography is something what the photo is made of. A very good
texture is even more enhanced with the use of grey scale.
In black and white color, natural textures that comprise the target
subject seem to respond very well. This type of photography is all about
the right timing, to capture the dramatic essence of the subject, to
hold it frozen in time and space. Capturing a subject with a naturally
dramatic texture is the first step for you to create a good black and
Stark metal, wood grain and repeated patterns are natural textures.
Having a subject with repeated patterns such as spirals and waves
usually responds very well with black and white photography. Symmetry is
very important with black and white photography. Keeping the symmetry in
the texture of your subject will help you make black and white photos
that will stand out from the rest. The symmetrical patterns in pictures
sometimes get lost in color as well as not being fully captured. With
black and white pictures, the symmetrical texture found in the subject
consistently appears beautiful. It offers something extraordinary that
the eye is not capable of capturing.
The grey scale in photography is not only about the shades of grey you
see in a picture or the absence of color in it. With the help of your
digital camera, you must understand and learn the concept of grey scale.
Understanding the concept it represents will help you master the
technique of black and white photography.
The spectrum of grey scale photography is black with plenty of white and
grey colors. I can be compared to the colors found in a rainbow, however
the series of the colors are found in black, white and grey tones.
A black and white photo is not actually limited to the colors black and
white. In actuality there are plenty of shades and depths of grey in a
picture. Grey scale in the world of photography is the way to measure
the tones of grey in a black and white picture.
It is oddly explained what will look good in a black and white picture.
You need to learn how to determine your subject. Knowing what will make
a perfect black and white picture will depend on the high contrasting
colors of your subject. Bright yellows, deep purple and red are
considered stark colors which will make a good starting point. These
bold colors will be interpreted by your digital camera differently. Your
digital camera will leave out the particular colors that will only be
distinguished by the eye, keeping the intensity in your black and white
For starters it will be very hard to understand technicalities with grey
scale photography. Start experimenting with bold colors first as your
black and white subject. You can start finding these colors at your own
home; if the colors are not there you can go to plant stores or public
gardens. Before you go clicking some black and white pictures, there are
five helpful tips that will help you with your black and white
First, learn to shoot in RAW. There are many people who owns a digital
camera and loves black and white photography with a passion, canít
either shoot in RAW or donít want to shoot in RAW. The reason behind
these can be one of the following. Canít shoot because the digital
camera does not offer the RAW service, doesnít know how it works or
simply doesnít want to do it. However, if your camera will allow it,
learn how to do it. It will control the conversion of your colored
photos into black and white pictures for your post-production phase.
Second, always shoot in color. This will help if your camera canít offer
shooting in RAW, as well as for those who choose not to. Most digital
cameras these days offer options of black and white photos with
reasonable results. Having the color date will allow you to have more
control with your black and white conversion. This is the advantage of
shooting in color. You can shoot in color and get as many high
contrasting colored-subjects as possible then do your black and white
conversion later on your computer.
The third helpful tip is to have the lowest ISO possible when in shoot.
This technique is not only important during color photography but
particularly important as well when it comes to black and white
photography. The Ďnoiseí or the Ďgrainí created by ISO can always be
added later for the post production of your black and white photos.
Fourth on our list is knowing when to shoot. A digital black and white
photographer generally prefers shooting photos in low contrast
situations. If youíre shooting for colored pictures which are likely
impossible because of the poor light due to gloomy weathers, prefer to
shoot some black and white shots instead.
The Fifth and last helpful tip for black and white photographers out
there is for composition. Train your eyes to look at the shapes and
distinguish the textures and tones of your frame and used it as a point
of interest. Highlights and shadows should be given most of the
attention because it will serve as a feature on you black and white