Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Monochromatic interlude

I've been going against my aversion to black and white photography this last week or so. I'm not too sure how it came about, but I think it has something to do with the graphic subject matter, and the way Fuji files convert from colour. My excuse being that the photos haven't been of a story-telling nature. They're not primarily documentary, more poetic. Which sounds terribly pretentious.

Towards the end of last week I took one of my usual routes for an afternoon walk, which lead me past a field of maize. With it being almost evening the sun was low and made for contrasty patterns in the crop.

In the wood the same lighting applied and I actually switched the camera to black and white mode. This is one of the few benefits of an electronic viewfinder for me.

I worked quickly without over-thinking my framing and exposing or the highlights because I knew I wanted contrasty pictures with black blacks. Of all my attempts to make pictures in the wood these, while far from great, are among my more successful results.

With one day of the weekend taken up trying to sell things to people and the second recovering from six hours of motorway driving come Monday it was a surprise to find the maize had been harvested. I had hoped to make some more pictures of the standing crop, but I was unfazed. There were still pictures there in the aftermath.

I didn't spend much time on my first visit, and even reverted to processing in colour. Which worked when there was bright colour in the pictures, but less so when they were already monochromatic.

The second visit saw me concentrating on graphic pictures in black and white, even though I had the camera set to colour. It was mostly a case of making Jackson Pollock style compositions over the entire frame. I even made a four frame grid.

 Details weren't disregarded, but again I tried to make something which had a rhythm to the image.

The idea of contrasty, abstracty, pictures had got in my head as I made my way home across the football pitches. The white goal posts and nets have always drawn my eye for some reason.

These are the sort of rubbish photographs I take when I don't have anything more interesting to point a camera at. The kind of pictures I've been making since I first picked up a camera in anger when I think about it. I'm sure a psychiatrist would have a field day analysing why I take these pictures!

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