Thursday, October 28, 2010

Monochromatic Outside the Box

Twilight Reflections, Saddle Creek Park, Lakeland, Florida

A monochromatic image contains shades of only one color. There are two ways to photograph in monochrome. One involves changing a full color image into shades of sepia. I want to focus, however, on images deliberately captured in the camera in full color yet they appear as monochrome. Each of the image examples in this post have had no color editing.

A monochrome image can be created by using the light to your advantage. In the twilight photograph above, late evening light and heavy clouds turned the surrounding sky blue. The sunrise image below is dominated by the orange of early morning light. Both are the result of the available light at that particular time of day.

Florida Sunrise

Another method of creating full-color monochrome images is through the use of shallow depth of field. I used this next image in last week's article, but it applies here as well. When I took this photo, I wanted a picture that gave you the feel for the texture of pine needles. My use of a shallow depth of field softened the predominant greens and removed any other distracting colors or textures.

Pine Needles

Another method of creating a monochrome image is through compositional framing. This red water lily was in a sea of flowers in many other colors. By closely framing the image, I excluded those colors leaving only the shades of red.

Really Red, Water Lily

Even "black and white" images can be created in full color. The extreme fog in this next photograph obscured so much light that any available colors were muted.

Morning Awakens, Saddle Creek Park, Lakeland, Florida

Photography should never be boring. As soon as I realize what I am doing has become too mundane, I set out to find a way to change it. I like creating monochrome photographs this way. For me, it is the challenge of doing something outside of the normal procedure and yet getting fantastic results that makes photography so much fun.

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Suzanne Williams Photography
Florida, USA

Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.

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