The Frequency of Love – A Series of Black and White Photography

Dan Eitreim

July 2, 2015

Digital cameras are great. And I love mine.

For someone who for years shot Tri-X black and white film, and Ektachrome color slides because they could be processed and submitted to a publisher within a few hours, there is nothing like taking some digital shots, running them through Photoshop, and zipping them off to their destination over the Internet.

But in the process, photography has lost its magic. And some of its charm. Photoshop may allow you to manipulate images. But there is no magic in it.

If you’ve never taken a roll of raw, exposed, color positive film, placed it in a few chemical solutions, and in a half-hour or so saw vivid, wet color slides emerge before your eyes, you’ve missed something.


Yes, chemical magic.

Sure, there is some of that in developing and printing black and white film, but it’s not quite the same since not only when doing Ektachrome or other color positive film do you get a strip of color slides at the end of the process, you get them directly since there are no negatives that need to be printed.

It’s an amazing process. How did those guys working in “analogue” come up with that?

As for black and white photography, whether with a view camera using sheet film or a 35mm camera loaded with Tri-X, working in black and white had a certain charm that digital photography lacks. And the silver based prints, when properly done, had certain richness you just don’t get with digital.

Shooting in black and white was a way of seeing. It was artistry. You’d be looking at a subject in color but seeing it in black and white, visualizing what you wanted the film to show or what it would show.

Shooting color meant seeing differently. A good color scene did not necessarily make a good black and white photograph.

Of course, this kind of seeing meant that you had taken photography beyond the snap-shot phase.

The “do-everything for you” digitals are great. But is that really photography, or just imaging?

Larry Stepanowicz is long-time photographer and author of photo business guides. For great deals on new and used film and digital cameras of all kinds, as well as more information about photography, visit his Photo Lines [photolines.com] site.

Article Source: EzineArticles.com

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