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Photography Magazine

Art of Landscapes

Seeing the World Without Colour, Part 2


This article couldn’t be more timely. I’ve just recovered from a severe bout of flu, and as I’m writing the piece I’m looking out at a grey, rainy sky above Denmark, where I’ll be staying for the next week. So I am having a hard time seeing any bright colours at the moment, which makes a perfect excuse to dig a little deeper into ‘seeing the world without colour’. So this time let’s take a closer look at my decision-making when it comes to converting images to black and white: the ‘where’ and ‘why’, and the full creative process. To do this, we’ll take a look at a selection of my shots and explore how they ultimately ended up as black and white.

But first, a little recap from last month’s Part 1 (add link). The first thing you need to remember is that I am a colour guy; seeing the world in black and white doesn’t come naturally to me. Then secondly, I don’t have any particular ‘arty’ reasons to convert colour shots to black and white; colour images are just as much of an art form to me than black and white ones. Overall, it just a matter of creative vision – perhaps a feeling, or simply the lack colour in a landscape that sparks a black and white ‘idea’. I’m not ashamed to say that many of my black and white images start life as a ‘last resort’, an experiment to save them from the bin. And only when they are converted into a black and white does their real strength spring to life. 

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