The Different Rules of Black and White Photos

Black and White Photography is NOT Color Photography Just "older looking"

Notice how in the image below the colors are so different that you would think the bright yellow and the green in the background would help create contrast in a black and white photograph.

However, this picture has almost the same tonal range throughout and if it's converted to a black and white photograph the following results.

Notice how the image looses all interest. It becomes flat and boring looking. This photograph looked great a color photograph but looses all its splendour as a black and white photograph. It uses such a narrow assortment of midranges that the photo lacks any sense of visual drama. It would be very easy for a passer-by to simply pass by this photograph without stopping. Below are the main tones the photograph uses as a black and white photograph.

This goes to show that while your black and white photographs don't need to have tonal balance, they should have range. Try to include very dark tones (blacks) and very bright tones (whites).

Other photography articles of interest
How to read a photographs histogram
Advanced photography tonal range
Different types of photography
Different types of landscape photography
How to take landscape photographs
How to take portrait photographs

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