If it doesn’t turn out right, convert it to black and white…

A few days ago, I wrote about my disappointment with some photos I took of a small creek. I decided that the sometimes it may not be my fault when photos don’t turn out the way I hope. The reason is simply this – the lighting simply may not be what it needs to be for the subject.

Then, I ran across a small waterfall created in a stream because of sustained rain in our area.  I took some photos and posted about it a couple days ago.

I learned a valuable lesson after both of those shoots – if they don’t turn out the way you wanted them to then convert them to black-and-white!

Now, let me qualify that statement.  I am not suggesting that you become lazy setting up your shots – not at all!  With every release of the shutter, we need to set up our shots with the best composition and exposure possible. The reality is, however, some photos, for whatever reason, simply doesn’t come out right. So, I convert them to black and white photos while editing to see if they can be salvaged that way.

I mentioned above and in my previous post that I found a small waterfall on the side of the road. My technique, lighting, and composition were fine – but the color of the water (muddy) did not come out right.  So, I converted them to black-and-white photos and had a great time experimenting with the editing.  Here are some comparison shots:

In my opinion, the color photos were made more dramatic and compelling through editing, but the color of the water wasn’t pleasant to me.  When I converted them to black and white, I was able to create moody, high-contract black-and-white photos that were more compelling.

When you find yourself disappointed with your color images, covert to black-and-white while editing and see how they turn out. You may salvage what you concern a wasted shoot with some fun photos that you will be proud of.



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