How Cool Is Black & White Photography?

So whilst we’ve all been desperately trying to enjoy this hot weather although perhaps quietly and some not so quietly, just wishing for a nice cool breeze and a normal English summer day here’s some thoughts on how the world copes with heat and how photography has captured it and does Black and White photography just add a little more heat to the message?

David Hicks is a photojournalist whose work is refreshingly honest, capturing those moments many of us take for granted. These photographs were taken around the world highlighting the need for air conditioning and how in some countries it would be simply unbearable without it.

However it does seem that globally temperatures are increasing and the need to cope with warmer weather in the UK is also apparently on the rise. Not wanting to be the country that has a mini panic if it’s too hot or too cold it would seem the time is here to just embrace, cope, enjoy, suffer, whatever the emotion and feelings, with the increase in our temperatures, the best we can, without excuses!

‘By the 1920’s fans were being churned out by new industrial methods making fans cheap enough for the general public to own. So these days if you can’t afford air conditioning and many, many millions can’t, get yourself a cheap reliable fan!’

Photojournalism is there to document the good, the bad and the ugly, to highlight what many of us visually take for granted. The choice of whether to share these moments in black and white or colour is another interesting decision a photographer takes. It is always interesting to consider the values of black and white photography and how it can often seem to take on a much more sombre atmosphere, which is very much hinted at in this collection.

There are no distractions in the images, no use of colour to enhance the architecture or indeed improve the emotions of the images. Your brain is not distracted by colour and perhaps there is a stronger and more emotional connection to the scenes conveyed. The shapes, patterns and shadows arguably create a more impactful image in the composition, focusing on the subject matter, rather than the aesthetics of colour. Black and white photography in this collection, feels vital to the actual message the images are conveying and the impact they have on the viewer — Pretty cool really!

Read our related blog:

Is Black & White Photography More Atmospheric Than Colour?

Who Are Your Top 5 World Photographers?

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