I don’t want to add fuel to the never ending discussion whether black and white photography is superior to color photography. Both have their pros and cons and reasons to be, and there sure are a whole lot of photographs that look better in the one or the other way, or in both, but with different moods and expressions. What is certain is that black and white photography is the realm of the shades and contrasts, and thus an art that is much closer to the conceptual than its replica in color. Nobody will doubt of the timeless and irresistible power that the great black and white photographs exert on the onlooker.
Alas, since I have turned to digital, I have left the black and white almost completely aside in favor of color photography. But when I started taking photos about 12 years ago, and installed therefore a rudimentary dark room in my bathroom, I was a fan of the tri-x film. And when I look today at those photographs printed on Ilford paper, I am prey to an ineffable nostalgia. Surely, black and white photography is per se the art of nostalgia, and also the exclusive realm of orthodox documentary photography, which at some point I came to despise.
Now, playfully re-discovering the black and white, I notice that it is still an incomparable and infinite world and I am filled with joy to experiment again with this simple but sophisticated discipline. Here are the first results. More here.
Criticism is welcome.
Claudia Lüthi is an amateur photographer who lives in Lima, Peru. She is a founding member of aamora. You can see Claudia’s previous aamora posts by clicking here. You can also find her in JPG Magazine and in el lente de la coneja.