The Black and White Road

So, a friend of mine commented to me in person that they felt that the B&W photo I posted yesterday didn’t have enough contrast to hold itself up as a good B&W photo.  I respect his opinion on things of art, so I came home to attempt to try it with some more contrast.  I may be aiming in the wrong direction, and to be blunt, I’ve gotten very happy with my smaller crop, so it won’t be the same overall view of the photo, but here is the old photo

And here is a newer, more contrasting photo.


And maybe that’s too dark, so here’s one that is lightened up a bit that gives more details on the sides.


Which do you all like better?  Any suggestions?


8 responses to “The Black and White Road

  1. Which one do you like? Harsh images like the first one do work with this subject matter. My opinion? Somewhere between the two but I’m partial to the first because I use techniques ‘like’ this quite often.

    What really matters is what you like. If you can gain insight into learning new ways to ‘process’ your photos… that’s great. Ultimately though, it comes down to what you like. Worry not what others say.

    • I like them all to an extent, but I don’t love any of them. The problem that I run into is that I don’t always consider my options. For example, with this, before he said something, I didn’t think to even TRY to go for a higher contrast. I think they both say something completely different, and the second option never crossed my mind.

      For me, I’m still partial to the first one, but I’m more partial to it in color, and his point was that going for an essentially black and white photo is kind of a waste if there isn’t a higher degree of contrast, and in this instance I think he’s right.

      However, what I wanted to convey with the photo just doesn’t work with the harshness and higher contrast. The road was foggy, the focus was soft and I just don’t think it overall translated to a great harsh contrast shot in my mind because of that.

      For this instance, I think my lesson was that certain techniques work for certain feelings and others don’t, and while I can make it a better black and white photo by increasing the contrast, I don’t make the photo I wanted to show people out of either, and that’s a good lesson to learn.

      Thank you for stopping by my blog and commenting, I appreciate your feedback.

  2. I also like the first one. Much more natural. The other two are great images also, but in comparison are much more stylized and dramatic. I agree with the exercise to see what feelings you can evoke by heightening the contrast. I’ m just starting to explore black and white and really appreciate the array.

    • Thank you for stopping by!

      I think you are right, the first one looks more natural, the others are much more dramatic and they tend to grab your attention harder. I still personally like the first image the best out of the three because it shows what I was trying to portray more than the other two, but that doesn’t change the fact that the other two do a better job of grabbing attention. I honestly don’t know how I feel about it other than to say I’m more partial to the color ones of the same shot and maybe it just wasn’t meant to be in B&W for that scene (in my eyes).

  3. I am torn between the first and third shots. I think I would lean toward the third, maybe a bit less contrasty. Also, I would probably crop the pothole right into the front corner, or near to it. Have you tried doing a colour filter when you convert to black and white? That would give you a bunch of options to look at and you might find you could emphasise parts of the image that you like the best. You always give something up that way, but sometimes its exactly the right thing to go.

    • I’m not certain how to do a color filter. When I created this one, I was using photomatix for the creation process, so it actually did the B&W itself. I may have to do the HDR portion through photomatix then change it to B&W in another program for that option. I might have to figure out and try that to see what I get.

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