Black and white photography has always been a popular choice. With black and white, there are fewer distractions in an image for the eye to uncover. It’s also a timeless, classic effect that can be used for a majority of photos. Most modern photographers are now sliding back into snapping black and white photos because they easily portray the desired emotions the photographer is going for. If you’re not a pro, use filters baby! That’s the quickest way to achieve this effect.
Where To Apply Black And White Filters
Love them. But where do you use them?
Architecture, landscapes, portraits, and animal photography work well in black and white.
Check out some of our examples below (made with Pixlr X).
Hard pass on black and white food. Might be really yummy in the tummy, but not for eyeballing. With modern food, presentation is always key. Food has to look tasty, not bland. Turning the saturation on low with food photos will fail to visually appeal. I’m not saying you shouldn’t do it, because it really depends on the style you’re going for. It’ll also be kind of challenging to achieve. So if you’re thinking about adding black and white food photography into your ‘gram, you might want to rethink the process a little.
Black backgrounds, black cutlery or napkins will further accentuate the texture of the food that needs to stand out. White plates have always been a classic go-to choice of photographers because of its neutrality. There will be a lot less colors for you to edit later on, too.
Animal shots in black and white is one of the most widely used forms for wildlife photography. Majestic lions, sombre elephants, prowling tigers and agile zebras looks particularly royal when photographed in black and white. A viewer will be able to connect to the image immediately on an emotional level. Hit Google up and run a quick search like we did – you’ll see what we mean.
Lately, we see a rise of this photography trend in domestic pet portraits, too. Pet owners want to see their pooches or feline friends portrayed in a similar light. 😉
Buildings have always been a popular choice for black and white photography. It makes sense to experiment because you see them everywhere a human can live. Sharp angles of a turret, the crumbling corners of an old building, and the pebbled texture of a wall’s surface – it’s easier to connect with the structure in monochrome.
Black and white tones work great with an already toned photograph of a spiraling staircase, too. There’s a vanishing point that visually pleases the viewer. Here, I made full use of the Porter filter (just play around with the opacity as you see fit) to replicate the black and white effect.
We’ve all seen Instagram posts of stunning, steal-your-oxygen-away type of photography. Ocean views, beachfronts and gorgeous island shots are the most popular posts people tend to like when they’re sprawled in an office chair, because they obviously would rather be on a forever vacation than at work. Who hasn’t had one of those moments?
If you’ve just returned to your office with a sun-kissed glow and memories of your fling with the ocean, but you’re still rocking a monochrome style – here’s how you can achieve a similar look with your photos. Using Pixlr X, I adjusted the tones after selecting Black & White under Adjust. As usual, experiment on your own and modify your image effects to your liking.
Photos of People
Big yes. Especially if you’re going for a more serious tone in your photography – or your subject just looks better in black and white. It depends. I used Agnes for all of these portraits, but you can play around with everything to suit the level of grey you’re going for. If none of the black and white filters appeal to you, try using your own adjustments to achieve an identical effect, toned to just the way you want it. 😉
If you’re interested in getting any of the images we’ve used, click here to view the Likebox.