Street Photography Diary - No.6. Black and White Edition
I've been kind of in a rut lately when it comes to shooting street photography. I've been doing the typical thing of blaming everything else. It's the weather (in fairness, it was) or it's the fact that there's roadworks everywhere in Dublin right now, but the truth of the matter is it's just me. Not one to be undeterred, I decided that to get my mojo back, I'd try something different. I do like black and white images, but lately I've been mostly shooting colour, so I decided to set my camera to black and white, and see what happens.
Setting your camera to a black and white picture mode on a mirrorless camera has the effect of making your viewfinder and screen black and white, and this changes the way you see a scene. And sometimes that little change is all you need to help you think outside the box. Or, in this case, see outside the box. Some people recommend doing this all the time, even when shooting in colour, but personally, I don't agree with this approach. I wrote about my reasons before. Anyway, technicalities aside, looking at familiar scenes in a different light helped me see things in a different way, and I approached the scenes in a different way too. Things that I would have passed over as dull and boring, took on shadow and depth. The annoying roadworks suddenly became an interesting palette of texture and detail.
There's a lot going on in Dublin right now. The tourist season is starting to wane, but there are still lots of tourists around. In the city centre, you're surrounded by people from all over the world, which is great to see. They're also in the process of extending the city's tram lines across the heart of the centre of Dublin, so there is construction everywhere, but as I said, it makes for some interesting texture.
I shot all these in Raw+JPEG, but obviously the RAW files didn't have the black and white information, so I converted them afterwards to match the Jpegs as closely as possible in tonality. I shot all these on my Sony A6000 with the Sony 35mm f1.8 lens, which, is not a great lens I have to say. Stopped down it's not too bad, and it's quite sharp, but optically the edges can be quite poor, especially at wider apertures. Still, it does the job, but I just wish sony made a 35mm lens for cropped sensors that was better. I know I could use the FE one, but it's very expensive. Anyway, here's some shots from my walk across the city. The black and white grade was done in Lightroom. I had tweaked the settings in camera and then I matched them roughly in Lightroom.I was going for dark and moody, as it was a dark and moody day! I've been working on a sequel to Monolith, and this look will be part of it. I hope to have it ready for release soon enough!
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