That is the question. I’ve talked about b&w vs. color before and it really is something I love. I take my saturation slider down in RAW on every single image I shoot. Just to see. Sometimes, the b&w moves me. Sometimes it’s the color that I love most of all. & I usually have a very clear favorite. I almost always know how I will process the instant I press the shutter button.
Color is beautiful. Sometimes the tones strongly influence the mood of the image. The warm sunny glow of early evening. The rosy cheeks of a toddler. The perfect pink rosebud lips of a newborn. But sometimes, it’s really distracting. Or bad. Or off. It sure is beautiful, when done well. I am known for photographing newborns in vibrant color, and that is how I like them. It is extremely difficult & I love the challenge.
But black & white is simply…breathtaking. It is about emotion. Feeling. Passion. Depth. I think deep down my love leans towards black & white imagery because they are hard to do well. Harder than color, I’d venture to say (unless we’re talking newborns) because b&w’s require a connection. Something between the subject & the photographer that makes the subject comfortable enough to be vulnerable & authentic. Then you really get to see them–in the absence of color & in the presence of emotion.
Which brings me to Michelle. The stunningly beautiful Michelle. Nowlin referred her to me, as she was looking for some new headshots for her business. She is Anthropologie‘s Personal Shopper at the La Cantera location. (To reach Michelle, you can call the store directly, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org) The instant I met her, we hit it off. She is warm and gentle and kind. You can see it in her eyes. But she is also STUNNING. & she was up for letting me experiment. So we spent a half hour together last week & I tested my new toy, the lensbaby composer & it was magic. Pure magic. Michelle, I hope you love these images as much as I do. I love the color just as much as the black & whites…so you are getting them all. I think you’ll find it is nearly impossible to pick a favorite–but the first one–in color– gets my vote. You are gorgeous!
The two images above were my first real shoot with my lensbaby composer. I am developing a very quick love for the nifty little thing. It’s hard to master, and I am not ready to use it on a moving subject, but boy, do I love it. Who knew a $250 lens could be so awesome! (thanks to my BFF & her birthday recon efforts!!!)
I have the most beautiful clients. Seriously.
& just in case you were wondering, I do headshot sessions every so often. They are treated as mini sessions & I shoot for 20-30 minutes & you get 5 digital images, printable up to 8×10 & web ready. This is the only time I shoot anything but newborns & are intended for business professionals for marketing purposes. Headshots are essential to brand success & an online identity is SO IMPORTANT. I love seeing my clients using my images around the internet! :)
So at the end of the day…what does it for you? black & white? or color? I just can’t decide…