Use Filters. Graduated neutral density (AKA ND grad) and polarizing filters are simply as useful in monochrome photography as they are in colour. In fact, because they manipulate image contrast they are arguably more useful . An ND grad is helpful when you require to retain detail in a bright sky while a polarizing filter could be used to decrease reflections and boost contrast. Alternatively, consider taking two or more shots with unique exposures to create a high dynamic range (HDR) composite. Don’t be afraid to use a ND grad with a standard neural density filter if the sky is brighter than the foreground in a long exposure shot. Coloured filters, which are an essential tool for monochrome film photographers, may also be advantageous for manipulating contrast in digital images. They work by darkening objects of their opposite colour while lightening objects of his own. An orange filter, for example, will darken the blue of the sky while a green single will lighten foliage.
Take Control. Although coloured filters should still be used to manipulate contrast when shooting digital black and white images, it’s more common to save this work until the processing stage. Until a some years ago Photoshop’s Channel Mixer was the favorite means of turning colour images monochrome, but now Adobe Camera Raw has more strong tools (in the HSL/Grayscale tab) that allow you to adjust the brightness of eight individual colours that make up the image. It’s possible to adjust single of these colours to make it anything from white to black with the sliding control. However, it’s important to keep an eye on the whole image when adjusting a particular colour as crafty gradations should become unnatural looking. And adjusting the brightness of a red or pink shirt with the red sliding control, for instance , will have an impact on the model’s skin, especially the lips. The Levels and Curves controls may also be used to manipulate tonal range and contrast, but the HSL/Grayscale controls allow you to create delineation between objects of the same brightness but with different colours.
Dodge and Burn. Dodging and burning is a peculiarity that comes from the traditional darkroom and is usually used to burn in or darken highlights and hold back (brighten) shadows. Photoshop’s Dodge and Burn tools allow a level of control that film photographers could only dream of because you can target the highlights, shadows or mid-tones with both. This means that you can use the Burn tool to darken highlights when they are too bright, or the Dodge tool to brighten up them to grow local contrast. It’s a good fashion of giving a sense of superior sharpness and enhancing texture. Plus, because you may set the opacity of the tools, you should build up their effect gradually so the impact is crafty and there are no hard edges.
Shoot RAW + JPEG. The unsurpassed monochrome conversions are lighted on by editing raw files which have the full colour information, but if you shoot raw and JPEG files simultaneously and set the camera to its monochrome picture Style/Picture Control/Film Simulation mode you get an indication of how the image will look in black and white. As numerous photographers struggle to visualise a scene in black and white, these monochrome modes are an invaluable tool that will help with composition and scene assessment. most cameras are also capable of producing decent in-camera monochrome images these days and it’s worth experimenting with image parameters (usually contrast, sharpness, filter effects and toning) to find a look that you like. Because compact fashion cameras and compact cameras show the scene seen by the sensor with camera settings applied, users of these cameras are able to preview the monochrome image in the electronic viewfinder or on rear screen before taking the shot. DSLR users may also do this if they kick in their camera’s live presumption habit , but the usually slower responses mean that most will find it preferable or check the image on the screen post-capture.
Look for Contrast, Shape and Texture. The complimentary and opposing colours that bring a colour image to life are all reduced to black and white or shades of grey in a monochrome image and you have to look for tonal contrast to make a shot stand out. In colour photography, for example, your eye would at once be drawn to a red object on a green background, but in monochrome photography these two areas are likely to have the same brightness, so the image looks flat and dingy straight from the camera. fortunately , it’s possible to work adjust the brightness of these two colours separately to introduce some contrast. However, a great starting point is to look for scenes with tonal contrast. There are always exceptions, but as a general rule look for scenes that contain some forceful blacks and whites. This may be achieved by the light or by the brightness (or tone) of the objects in the scene as well as the exposure settings that you use. The brightness of the bark of a silver birch tree for example, could inject some contrast (and interest) in to a woodland scene. Setting the exposure for these brighter areas also makes the shadows darker, so the highlights stand out even more. Look for shapes, patterns and textures in a scene and move around to find the greatest composition.
Try Long Exposure. Long exposure shots can work really well in monochrome photography, especially where there’s moving water or clouds. During the exposure the highlights of the water, for example, are recorded across a wider area than they would with a short exposure and this may help enhance tonal contrast. The blurring of the movement also adds textural contrast with any solid objects in the frame. If necessary , use a neutral density filter such as Lee Filters’ Big Stopper or Little Stopper to decrease exposure and extend shutter speed (by 10 and 4 stops respectively). characteristically , when exposures extend farther than as regards 1/60 sec a tripod is required to keep the camera still and avoid blurring. It’s also advisable to use a remote release and mirror lock-up to minimise vibration and produce super-sharp images.
Related Images of Best Black And White Landscape Photographers
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Greg Stamos is in our opinion an anomaly – there’s no way this guy only has 290 follows! If you’re looking for inspiration on shooting long exposures in black and white this account is a must follow. His landscape images all have a quiet and calm about them that’s downright dreamlike.If serene compositions, long exposure photography, with tons of seascapes as the main subject is your thing, Greg Stamos is an Instagrammer to keep on your radar.
A photo posted by B A X S T E R . (@heybaxster) on Oct 30, 2016 at 7:51am PDT
10 Under 10K: Fantastic Black and White Landscape Photographers on Instagram (Premium)
A photo posted by Steve Allsopp (@noosa.life.images) on Oct 1, 2016 at 4:49pm PDT
Nathan Wirth’s bio simply states “I try to photograph silence;” a simple goal for a complex emotion that he does in fact nail. The majority of his landscapes exude a stillness and serenity that’s the opposite of what you’d find on Instagram. Instead of creating high-tension imagery that’s “Like” fodder on the service, Wirth focuses on the stillness of nature and the absence of man. When humans are in the frame, their smallness in comparison to nature reminds us that sometimes the best emotion is that of silence and introspection.
A photo posted by Greg Stamos (@greg_stamos_photography) on Sep 20, 2016 at 9:15pm PDT
A photo posted by Rama Benlantara (@bw_benlantara) on Oct 11, 2016 at 5:18am PDT
Steve A. Spiliotopoulus is a Santa Cruz, CA based Fine Art Photographer specializing in Outdoor Photography. His passion for Black & White Photography as well as his love for the ocean inspires his beachfront seascapes. His images focus on the play between negative space and the contrasting landscapes. His use of tonal range helps create pleasantly contrasting images that turn the ocean into a cloud-like dreamscape.
11.22.2016 – Spotlight / 10 under 10K / instagram / landscapes / Member Only
Rama Belantara is another Indonesian Black & White photographer that’s creating some absolutely stunning work using his homeland as his muse. Belantara creates moody and dark compositions of his native land that feel like a distant memory or dream that you keep replaying in your mind. Belantara uses vast ecological diversity of Indonesia to highlight everything from the rainforest to the coast lines; it’s the next best thing to actually being there.
It’s no surprise that Julius Alexander would be one of the curators of an Instagram group called BNW_Drama; his landscapes are filled with dramatic tones bring out an almost surreal vision of the Indonesian coasts. Julius’s use of drama very acutely knows where to draw the line between bold and kitschy.
Christophe Wilhelm is a French Black & White photographer based in San Jose, CA that has completely been smitten by the State Parks of the United States. His images use high contrast and faded processing to evoke a nostalgic sense that he’s not just taking a photo but capturing the essence of nature. His compositions rely heavily on contrast and detail to give his photographs the are heavily influenced by the work of Ansel Adams.
HeyBaxster aka Marcos Sipriaso, starts off our list of Instagrammers to follow; his timeline is a mix of long exposure seascapes and travel photography that captures the beauty all around us. HeyBaxster uses tone and light to create contrasty, visually stunning work that’s meant to inspire wanderlust in his followers. The San Diego native uses a combination of dark and light tones to produce sharp images with tons of detail; it’s a slick modern look that we love.
A photo posted by Nathan Wirth (@nlwirth) on Sep 15, 2016 at 12:06am PDT
A photo posted by Steve Spiliotopoulos (@spiliotopoulos831) on Oct 9, 2016 at 7:58am PDT
A photo posted by Vesa Pihanurmi (@vesapihanurmi) on Sep 17, 2016 at 5:08am PDT
Chris Grenda is a relatively new photographer on Instagram; his profile bills him as a photographer jack-of-all-trades but it’s his dark and brooding landscapes that truly catch your attention. KrysisC99’s work reminds us of old Film Noir images – they’re unapologetically dark with lots of contrast that add texture to his scenes. This photographer is for those that love their imagery with a bit of grit.
For regular readers of La Noir Image, you’re already familiar with what’s becoming a regular column – our 10 under 10K Instagram feature. If you think that Instagram is just for the filter-happy shooter think again; our list includes truly amazing gems hidden among the hashtags. Though most IGers posting landscapes prefer shooting in color by a large margin, this made these Instagrammers that much easier to spot. So if you’ve been looking for a little inspiration to photograph amazing vistas in Black & White this list will be sure to please.
The “Patience” Series (3/3). Carlsbad, CA. #themorningcoffee ____________________________________________ Full gallery at HeyBaxster.com. Link in bio. ____________________________________________
This Australian photographer (by way of the UK) is capturing seascapes of the Noosa coastline under the alias @noosa.life.images are like scenes from the best dream you ever had. Specializing in long exposure landscapes, Allsopp creates velvety waves that invite his followers sit by the shore daydreaming of their next beach getaway.
A photo posted by Alexander Julius Wijaya (@juliusalexander_23) on Oct 22, 2016 at 8:04pm PDT
A photo posted by Christophe Wilhelm Photography (@christophe_wilhelm) on Oct 26, 2016 at 7:56pm PDT
The Helsinki based Vesa Pihanrumi is a fine art photographer opts for a more poetic and atmospheric approach to landscapes. His compositions opt for more muted tones and employ the use of lots of negative space. Though by his own admission he’s only recently started to make photographs in any serious capacity, he’s quickly moving up in the ranks among the Instagram crowd and is definitely a photographer to be on the look out for.