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Project 52 Week 2: “Black & White”

Welcome to week 2 of the 52 Week Pet Photography Project Blog Circle – I’m on a roll!  I do admit though, I miss the book.  If you are just joining us, last year we followed David Duchemin’s book, “The Visual Toolbox“.  It was great to follow along and have an exact assignment to go out and shoot.  We could read about it and then find out more info if needed. It made us think outside of the box, be creative, and really learn to critique our own style.   When this week’s topic came out, “Black and White”, I thought:  What about it?  Why would I shoot that way?  When would I shoot without color? What makes a capture better in black and white?  I guess I’m going to have to do some “trial and error” and some reading up this week!

I did a little online research and one of the quotes that stood out to me was from a  post by New England photographer, Nicoal Price.  She states: “Black and white is a good choice when the color in a photo serves only as a distraction from the message you want the image to convey.”  Also: “Most black and white images are most successful when there are definite blacks and whites–that is, the tones in the photo range all the way from the blackest black to the whitest white with lots of varying gray tones in between.”

I decided to opt for  photographing 2 dogs that I would never think to do in black and white.  A Siberian Husky, Bob Marley,  and my own husky mix, Kota. My reason for this being Bob Marley has amazing crystal blue eyes and Kota has stunning amber eyes.  The eyes are what draws people to the breed.  A pop of color.  Contrast.  I love color!  But going along with what photographer Nicoal says, Marley might be a perfect subject since his coat coloring is black and white and I am photographing him against the white snow.  The only color in the photo would be his blue eyes to begin with.

Here is Bob Marley captured with snow in the background.  I do think there is a “mood” to the photo and being a black and white Siberian Husky, this might just work!  Thoughts?


Bob Marley BW 1 of 1
Bob Marley: Deep Thoughts

The next is Kota, taken during a light snow.  The day was a little on the “drab” side.  There honestly was not much color to begin with – just her amber eyes.  Thoughts on this one?


Kota Snow BW 1 of 1
Kota enjoying the snowfall


The last image is one that I love in color that I decided to try in black & white – another snow picture.  In color,  Kota’s eyes were the bright amber.  I do think it works in the black and white, though.


Kota Snow Tongue out BW 1 of 1
Catching snowflakes Kota style


I’d love to do more in black and white and experiment with it.  It’s a challenge for me to get away from color.  This was  a good assignment for working with something I don’t do often!

Next up on our Pet Photography 52 Week Project Blog Circle is Linda Metcalf with DogShotz Photography serving the Indianapolis, IN area.  Click on the link and follow our blog circle to see some amazing Pet Photography work!

Thanks for stopping by and have a  great weekend!




18 thoughts on “Project 52 Week 2: “Black & White””

  1. I find it interesting and a nice comparison to show how the tones of your blacks and whites can either highlight very definite contrast, like in the photo of Bob Marley, or lend themselves to a more monochromatic look, as shown in the first shot of Kota. I suppose it all boils down to personal preference. Both work very well, in my opinion, but offer a slightly different feel in their range of tone.

    1. Thank you, Jessica! I do find the black and white working better Bob Marley since he is black and white….definitely a different feel depending on the dog’s coloring! Appreciate your input as always!!! 🙂

  2. Beautiful work! I admit I got a little nervous reading your entry, wondering if you were going to try selective color for the huskies’ blue eyes. I’m not a fan of selective color but if anything would look right with it, a husky’s blue eyes might. Well done!

  3. I think all of these work great in black and white! I especially love the one of Kota enjoying the snowfall. The back and white really brings out the falling snowflakes and Kota’s expression is perfect.

    1. Thanks, Blue! 🙂 I definitely don’t do black and white enough – with our New England winters i should try it much more with the snow!

  4. I really like the black and white as it brings so much attention to the dog(s), their eyes and striking coat markings. It all pops!

  5. I like all of the image conversions. My favorite is the one with the snow beginning to fall. Something about Kota’s expression in that one calls to me. I find that I really do like black and white for certain images, and it’s always fun experimenting!

    1. Thanks, Elaine! It was definitely fun experimenting with this assignment. I do love how snow can play a good role in the “mood” with black and white I’m learning!

  6. I love them all, but especially the first one of Kota, you really captured the mood and I love the effect!

    I also struggled with black and white as I’m such a huge fan of colour – I’m used to only using black and white when there’s a real reason for it so it was strange to convert to B&W just ‘because’ but it was nice to experiment too 🙂

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