I had an hour to kill recently in Sale, so of course I took along my camera. By the time I was free to kill my hour, the light was starting to fade, and by the time my hour finished there wasn’t much light left at all. As the light faded more and more, I was reminded that Black and White photography is not just about the greys, and the tonal ranges, and patterns and textures, but it is also about Blacks and Whites.
By which I mean we mustn’t be afraid to let the blacks go black, for the shadows to be too dark to contain any detail, and for the highlights to blow out, leaving nothing but pure white. It adds a sense of drama, which is usually a good thing, especially in black and white.
It’s hard to find much to blow out the highlights at twilight, so I decided to let the shadows block up instead. It makes it look later and darker than it really was (who says the camera never lies?) but I don’t think it’s to the detriment of the images.
It may not be very clear cut, but I’ve decided that this is going to sit in Documentary. It tells the story of the light drawing in and the little town of Sale entering the evening. It may be strictly more photo essay than documentary, but I’m pretty sure the line between the two is blurred anyway.
You know what to do with the image below….