B&W - discuss...

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Jedo_03, Oct 18, 2008.

  1. Jedo_03

    Jedo_03 TPF Noob!

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    I just had a peek at some B&W images on another forum (thank God, not TPF!) and thought/wondered "do people convert their colour images to B&W because the colour images are blown/clipped/colour-cast/flat/under-over exposed...etc?
    I just get the sneaking suspicion that 'some' people (on other forums) convert their colour images to B&W because the conversion "hides" the imperfections.
    Like - some/a great many of the white dresses/clothing of the models in the B&W images was most definitely 255, 255, 255... Just white blobs.
    Most of the comments I saw were "Great Conversion... Good Tones... You got a great balance...", when clearly, these were poor images...
    One poster said that she 'preferred B&W' because it 'didn't show all of the imperfections of colour photographs'..!!
    So...
    Do you think that people convert their images to B&W to 'disguise' the problems of their colour images..?
    I will be contentious - I think that they Do....
    Jedo
     
  2. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Some people convert because they think it hides imperfections or makes the image more "artistic." They're stupid.
     
  3. Chris of Arabia

    Chris of Arabia Herding cats since 1988... Supporting Member

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    I convert when I feel the subject matter suits B+W - not saying I always call it right, but that's the general idea. Trying it because the colour version doesn't work probably isn't going to make things much better if at all.
     
  4. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Don't hold it all in Alpha; tell us what you really think!
     
  5. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Always do.
     
  6. aprileve

    aprileve TPF Noob!

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    gotta admit that I've done that on occasion. though I'm not in the habit of it anymore.
    for awhile there I felt like if an image was just slightly oof or really grainy it looked better in b&w. :shock: :oops:
     
  7. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    That is correct. Some people convert to greyscale when all else fails. Personally I do not care. We all form our own relationship with photography. I wish I had time to consider why others do what they do, but I don't.

    Basically the world is in colour, so of course B&W is more dramatic... What makes you think this is a bad thing? Aren't we all just trying to enjoy the art of photography?

    Love & Bass
     
  8. Jedo_03

    Jedo_03 TPF Noob!

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    Craig - not exactly saying it's a 'bad' thing - just that it seems like some people convert to B&W as an "opt-out", the 'easy' way to make their pics more 'presentable' (Hey - saves all the -ve comments about blowout and colour-cast and W.H.Y...)
    Well... You say "When all else fails..." LOL
    I say - It's a poor photographer who resorts to fake imagery to disguise the faults and discrepencies of their photographic skills...
    In "plain" langauge - if a colour image is crap/blown/clipped, is it moral to convert this to B&W and extol the virtues of the photographer in being able to 'capture' such a "wonderful" B&W image...?
    Well... I say not...
    As you said - basically, the world is in colour... You are right...
    This is how we see the world around us...
    NOT B&W...
    Some afficianodo's see the world in NEON/POPPED/SEPIA...
    That is "their" interpretion...
    What I'm addressing is the 'Cop-Out" of converting colour images to B&W to hide/disguise/nullify imperfections in their colour images that betray their skills in camera technique...
    Nuff-Said
    Jedo
     
  9. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I don't see it as a copout as such since calling black and white a copout starts to question what other things are.
    Is the burn tool a copout?
    Is altering curves a copout?

    once you start thinking down that line of thought even basic editing starts too look like a copout for bad photographic practise. In the end its a tool, if it takes a photo that is poor and makes it look a little better without blatent lies being used (such as cloning in a new background for example) then I can't see why people should not use it to get a few more keepers out of a photo shoot.
    Of course today black and white is not seen as a meduim, but as an art form (very much so in the digital areas where you nearly always shoot in colour and convert later) so its under more stress to work as a black and white today than it was in the past when colour was not an option.
    And not every shot works well with black and white - some just don't function well without their bright colours. Also overexposed areas still show up in them - the shot is still not perfect/.
     
  10. holga girl

    holga girl TPF Noob!

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    you also have to remember that black and white film itself is a more 'forgiving' film, allowing a person to shoot under circumstances that were not favorable and still be able to produce a pleasing result.

    back in the days of film i often took black and white along with me for situations that i knew would need a bit more forgiveness in exposure. why should it be so different with digital?

    also remember that in the days of film, you had to get it right the first time, everytime, in the camera. in the days of the super over pp digi images, i see no fowl in converting a slightly blown/noisy image to black and white. i find less harm in that than brides that appear to be air-brushed models from the latest issue of elle.
     
  11. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    ...http://thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=135538


    But anywho, Where I buy film, it's the only place locally convienient and they do not carry any B/W so I at current only have convertions as an option. When I convert to BW it's nine times out of ten shot with the intention of convertion right from the get go. Take this reasent convert. This is the unprocessed shot here. Yile yes there is a blue cast to it, but it was corrected prior to convertion. If you look closely you can see it but I digress. As I was saying, I composed that and shot it for B/W, If I had B/W film I would have used it for that shot. I'm not trying to hide anything, infact if anything I exadgerated flaws.
     
  12. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What are you talking about....tis still the days of film




    as far as I am concerned ;)
     

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