Hackernoon logoThe Ultimate Guide to Monochromatic Photography by@gophotoglife

The Ultimate Guide to Monochromatic Photography

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@gophotoglifeGo PhotogLife

At Go PhotogLife we are passionate about the past, the present and the future of photography.

Monochromatic photography means using only a single color with a few variations in shades. In the post-production of these photos, special effects are added to deliver a stunning and captivating appearance. To make things simple, many consider black and white photos as monochrome photos, but it’s not always true. 

Shooting your subject with monochrome black and white filters makes your snap appear more emotive and dramatic. Photographers appreciate mono photography because these kinds of photographs have a minimum color to distract. They leave the viewer to focus on important elements of the image. The most interesting fact is that you can use tonal contrast to represent your story idea and emotions of the subject. B&W is how photography initially started and surprisingly it is still quite complex to master monochrome art. 

Monochrome photography is not just all about taking black & white photos. In this blog, you can get a better insight into this amazing art. You will also be able to gain a handful of tips to get started with superb monochrome photography. So what are we waiting for? Let’s begin. 

Study Your Scene

If you want to capture monochrome photos you need to plan in advance for perfect shooting. Decide a golden hour for a perfect shoot. Learn how to illuminate the right part of the subject with the proper amount of light, and observe which part is left in shadow. Thus, you will know how to place your object in the frame. Pre-visualize the picture with monochrome effects apart from the colorful composition. You will observe the strong image created with one color works so well and the clean leading lines can grab viewers’ attention easily as well.

Scene Should Fit 

Your scene should fit in the composition well. Your eyes need a lot of practice to observe which scene would fit better in a monochrome frame than in a colored frame. Natural spots are good for monochrome frames because of sharp leading lines and outstanding contrast combination. 

Shoot Raw And Experiment

Shoot in raw format and add filters to your file in post-production to maintain the superior quality of the image. Also, try to capture the dynamic atmosphere from long distances and add movement to it for better visual impact. Take advantage of things that are moving in your frame by describing them in-depth with a gradient. 

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Focus On Patterns

In a colorful image, the color pops out the subject and objects around it. But remember, in the case of a monochrome shot, you need a strong composition of patterns, textures, and leading lines to catch the viewer’s eye. For better effectiveness, try to highlight and darken the clipped parts accordingly. It’s good to apply a lot of contrast to your image to emphasize the subject shapes and lines. So, deepen the black and brighten the white. 

Focus On Patterns

In a colorful image, the color pops out the subject and objects around but in the case of a monochrome shot, you need strong composition of patterns, textures, and leading lines to catch the viewer’s eye. For better effectiveness, try to highlight and darken the clipped parts accordingly. It’s good to apply a lot of contrast to your image to emphasize the subject shapes and lines. So, deepen the black and brighten the white. 

Lens Filters

Lens filters in monochrome photography allow the use of a neutral density filter which can control the light coming into the lens while covering a long dynamic range.

You can also use polarizing filters for reducing reflection and adding high contrasting effects. A polarizer is essential while you are covering water surfaces in your snap. 

Cameras

There are professional cameras available that are specially designed to shoot monochrome scenes only. These cameras are having the potential to offer you cleaner and sharp edge black and white images. These cameras can balance the effects of shadow, tones, contrast, shapes, and texture so well in order to pull real emotion out of the image. 

Conclusion

If you are already an expert in taking creative color photos, you just need to reevaluate and change the way you view your subject. To take monochromatic photos you need to pay attention to the shooting scene, tonality, image patterns, leading lines, and composition significantly. To take amazing monochromatic images, you need to gear up your photography techniques with advanced equipment like B&W cameras and lens filters. But be careful; the same techniques will not work for every snap. So, get ready to expose the world to a new height of monochromatic photos beyond the color decorative. 

Originally published on https://gophotoglife.com/how-to-take-mono-photography/

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