B&W Friday

I was reading the current issue of Outdoor Photographer magazine and came across an article on B&W . It was about Montana photographer Jay Wesler and titled Under the Big Sky. What struck me was the use of the deep red filter to make the skies go black. This really added drama especially with white clouds. When using a red filter, blues become darker and shades of red becomes lighter.

I thought about some of the fall foliage photos from the Smoky mountains. I pulled up that trip on Lightroom and proceeded to export them to Silver Efex Pro.

Click the photos to see them larger

The first one was a clear blue sky off Hwy 64 next to the Ocoee river. It just did not have the drama. I didn’t catch on at first.I thought about one with more fall foliage and this worked better. I did notice how the cloud stood out and I thought ” Ahh ha it is the white puffy clouds that drew me to Jay’s photos. I searched for one with just the right clouds and fall foliage.Now this was more like it. Anywhere there is a blue cast, as in shadows, turns darker.I tried one with more fall foliage but a more overcast sky and it just doesn’t have the oomph that the blue sky and white clouds.This one just didn’t have enough of the dark sky. It also exposes a problem with a polarizer filter and a wide angle lens. The effect of the lens is inconsistent across the photo.I chose this one not only for the even sky and clouds but the fact that a Texaco sign is red and you can see the way the filter reacts to it.Then I came across a couple of HDR photos I had done and VOILA there it was.

You may not like this effect and it doesn’t work in all cases. I, however, find it appealing and art is subjective. Afterall, that is what it is all about. If the creator is happy what else matters.

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