Inspiration Ramblings

Seeing in black and white

· 4.July.2015

I love black and white. Looking at black and white photographs and photographing in black and white myself. Quite often I am wondering myself where has this fascination come from and I don’t have a clear answer. I guess it is a mixture of inspiration (I have been looking at images from such masters as Henri Cartier-Bresson or Alfred Stieglitz for as long as I remember) and my philosophy of life in general. I like taking things quietly, I like balance.

This weekend I am spending time alone with my 11 month-old daughter. My wife left for a concert to the UK (she is a violinist), so automatically I became a “house husband”. After taking care of our place and putting my daughter to sleep, it was still very bright outside (it gets dark around 10 p.m. these days). The light was getting gradually just perfect, sun setting down, shadows getting longer.

I grabbed my X-T1 and set it to my favourite black and white settings: Monochorome+Yellow Filter, Highlights +2, Shadows +2. That’s how I love it: good contrast, deep blacks, the images gain character and depth. I was shooting in a JPG mode. I used to be an almost religious RAW shooter, but recently, with those gorgeous Fuji JPGs I tend to shoot this smaller format more and more.

And again, I looked for the beauty in the mundane (I guess I am borrowing this phrase from Eric Kim). Obviously I had to stay home, as my daughter was sleeping, so I started looking around, quietly and patiently, instinctively reacting to things and light patterns, which were catching my eye. I am an “instinctive photographer”. I react. I rarely pre-visualise.

And here it is, my set of images from yesterday evening. It was such a nice experience.


“Closed window”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 3200, 18mm, f/4.5, 1/60sec.



“Lamp”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 3200, 20.5mm, f/6.4, 1/40sec.



“Pillows on the sofa”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 800, 46.3mm, f/5.0, 1/60sec.



“My wife’s pullover”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 800, 46.3mm, f/5.0, 1/60sec.



“Charging the laptop”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 1250, 55mm, f/5.0, 1/60sec.



“Laundry”. X-T1 + XF 18-55mm f/2.8-4.5. ISO 3200, 37.4mm, f/8.0, 1/60sec.

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