I have never been a big fan of black and white (B&W) photography, perhaps because I am more of a futurist than a historian. For most, B&W photos are associated with old photographs, so it is not surprising that when we see a black and white photo it looks historic. Contrastingly, colour photography is associated with new technology, we are surrounded by vivid images everywhere we look, particularly with our high resolution computer and TV screens.
I am not a professional photographer, but over the years I have received lots of complements about the photography that accompanies the Everyday Tourist blogs. However, I also love to experiment, so I thought it might be fun to play with B&W photos of one of my favourite places to flaneur – downtown Calgary.
I was surprised at how the B&W images immediately changed the sense of place buildings, corners and streets that I am very familiar with. It was like unearthing a whole new world. The images were more dramatic, more sinister and more surreal. The skies in particular became more ominous. The narrative seemed to be stronger. My imagination was immediately engaged.
I couldn’t believe how the light changed the entire compositions. The lines and shapes became more compelling. Overall the photographs become more like drawings or etchings, rather than paintings or silk-screens or my previous photography.
As I continued to experiment with darker and lighter images, I was hooked. Not only did I discover a new technique for visualizing urban spaces and places, but I also developed a new appreciation for the charm of my downtown.
I hope you enjoy the results of my experimentation. As always, comments are welcomed.