Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

June 20, 2008

Yountville Black and White alternative

Filed under: Photography, Projects/Series — Doug Stockdale @ 3:57 am

Well, I do not know what the issue was, but nevertheless, I can now post the photograph that I had tried unsuccessfully last evening. So I am going to edit this entry and continue on with what I am was trying to say.

I had placed this same black & white image on Stills, another site which I particpate on, which is for photographic critiques. Anita’s comment on my color version yesterday reminded me again about how folks can react to any given image, where she greatly prefers the color version to my black & white version.

Although they are the “same” photograph, they are emotionally different. Both are abstract, two dimension representatives of the real world.  I find that color is more directly representational.  With the black and white, I can shift tonal values and relationships much more to obtain a wider range of appearances and subsequent emotional effects. For me then, it is the question: what am I trying to accomplish with this specific photograph, eh?

I spent many, many years photographing the natural landscape in black and white, thus it seems that my initial reaction to a natural landscape is to convert it immediately into a grayscale black & white photograph. A lot had to do with the prusit of archival printing that I could accomplish in my own darkroom, thus in the 70’s & 80’s, that eliminated color for me. And now things have changed a ton, eh?

Interestingly for me, my SoFoBoMo surban landscape project was a no-brainer, it would be with color photographs. Probably for many, you wonder; what’s the big deal? As it seems that all current contemporary photographs are prodominately in color. Much like taking color TV, computers and the like for granted. I do think that I have an alternative to making color photographs. Just because I can, does not mean that I should.

So for me, it is still a part of my creative decision as to whether I develop a photograph, whether a singular image or part of a series, in which color space. I am still invested in the emotional content and what it is I am trying to convey. Just a little difficult for me to put my finger on the exact reason for one versus another, must be that guy thing about dicussing your feelings, eh?

But it seems that it does eventually come to me, I just need to take a the time to coax it out into the open and the light of day. nice.

With the black & white version, I found my self with an image that on the surface looked nice and normal, somewhat even idlyic with the white picket fence. But then I have that dark looming old structure in the lower left corner. It adds an omonous feeling to the iamage, such that there is something lingering or haunting in this peaceful place. There there may be a dark seceret. A kind of Hitchcock feeling, that you might not want to go into that dark place, as you just might not know what you will find or what might happen to you. It has that kind of a dark presence for me. Very unlike what I wrote for the color version.

(Okay, WordPress is going really wierd on me tonight. I know, it is not a good craftsman who blames his tools when the work looks bad. But I am having major issues tonight with my posting a message (this is my third attempt) or inserting a photograph in the message (five attempts, no success). So maybe tomorrow, eh?)

Best regards, Doug

Update note: BTW that one palm at the top of this B&W photograph almost looks like a menancing claw or some scary create about to pounce. Amazing what you start seeing in a photograph when you start being suggestive with some alternative interputations;- )

1 Comment »

  1. Could it be that you have exceeded your space limit??

    Comment by Kjell Harald — June 20, 2008 @ 2:29 pm


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