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Monday, April 21, 2008

Black and White Photography Tips  
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Black and white photography is becoming increasingly popular in the world of scrapbooking. Although black and white photography is often associated with heritage photos, the technique can work surprisingly well in contemporary scrapbooking projects.

Black and White Photo  Black and White Photo

Why Choose Black and White Photography?

Black and white photography offers many advantages for scrapbookers. For example:

  • Black and white photography helps to camouflage the imperfections in your photos. If you have a snapshot that is slightly blurry and overexposed, converting it to black and white will make these flaws less obvious. Photos taken on overcast days also tend to look much better in black and white.
  • It’s easier for the eye to make connections between black and white photos when you’re making a layout with pictures taken at different time periods.
  • Black and white photography gives you the freedom to work with a variety of scrapbooking products. When you aren’t worried about matching the colors in your photo, you can choose whatever patterned paper and embellishments happen to catch your eye.

Essential Black and White Photography Tips

While black and white photography tends to be very forgiving, it’s still a good idea to remember the basic principles of photography. For example, you’ll want to remember the “rule of thirds” when setting up your shot. Instead of simply centering your subject in the middle of the frame, try to visualize the frame divided into three sections both horizontally and vertically before placing your subject at one of the intersections.

Additional tips to remember when composing your shots include:

  • Work with strong lighting whenever possible. To reduce harsh and unflattering shadows, shoot outdoors in natural light early in the morning or late in the evening.
  • Pay close attention to contrast. The best black and white photos have clearly defined areas between the foreground and surrounding environment. Remember, highlights compete for attention and dark tones help to create negative space within your image.
  • Use textures to add interest to your image. Without color, black and white images can sometimes seem a bit “flat.”  However, this flaw can easily be fixed by choosing a background that incorporates interesting textures. A brick wall or a piece of weathered driftwood on the beach can make for a great backdrop. The texture of denim is also quite flattering when taking portraits of friends and family members.

Adding Interest with Spot Color

In many cases, black and white photography is beautiful on its own. However, there are certain projects which can benefit from the use of spot color to enhance special details. For example, you could highlight the bright colors in a photo of your son playing with his favorite stuffed animal or add spot color to an image of the flowers in your garden.

Tinting pens can be used to add spot color to your favorite black and white prints.
You can also add spot color by digitally altering your image using software such as Adobe Photoshop Elements. For a quick tutorial on this great scrapbooking technique, visit the BioRUST Web site.

Posted by A Cherry On Top

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