Stark Contrast

FUJIFILM X100T @23mm, ISO 200, 1/250 sec, f/10 [click image for larger size]
FUJIFILM X100T @23mm, ISO 200, 1/250 sec, f/10
[click image for larger size]

Although my latest spree of images have been predominantly colour, a challenge I set for myself, when I am walking around, with or without a camera, I think in black and white. I think of how the shadows fall and what the negative space is doing in contrast to the rest of the scene. I think about the shapes that are being made, the greys in between. I think of how best to represent it, in landscape or in portrait, while standing up or kneeling down and, finally, what to omit from the image to make it work as a photograph.

This image came out of that deep-rooted addiction I have. A pathological want and need to capture the world as though it existed in one big Noir film full of high contrast, deep blacks shadows, negative space and shapes.

Original unedited image
Original unedited image

To get the overall look and tone I wanted for the image I shot in black and white, changed the white balance to Tungsten and underexposed the image by two stops, all in-camera. This technique is known as Day for Night shooting, it is one I have written about before and it is a technique I rather enjoy using.

In post processing the image was straightened, cropped in a tighter and the contrast was heightened to give the image a more stark feeling. I also removed the car on the left of the image to try to bring a little more balance to the finished article. It is a decision I am still pondering over, as I am unsure if it was the right decision, but I do like the way the shadows on the ground look like they are crawling up the walls trying to reach the top. I like the tips of the leafs that are falling into the image and how they contrast with the square, blocky nature of the building. Overall I am happy with it and I have satisfied me urge… for the moment…

All thoughts and comments are welcome.

Happy viewing


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