When you photograph a man in colour, you photograph their clothes. When you photograph a man in black and white, you photograph his soul.Ted Grant, Canadian photojournalist
I’m not sure I fully agree with the above quote, but I do think it’s true that when you look at a monochrome portrait you are most drawn to the face rather than the person’s surroundings.
It won’t come as a surprise to anyone who follows this blog that I enjoy street photography and also taking more formal portrait shots of some of the people I encounter on my travels. Although I take all my photos in colour (to give me options), I do like to experiment with monochrome when I edit. I find it can work particularly well with characterful faces. So when Brian (Equinoxio21) suggested that the portrait of a fisherman in Fort Kochi that I included in my recent The roads I take post would work well in black and white I naturally accepted the challenge. That shot is featured above and I hope you agree that it works.
But of course I couldn’t leave it there! So I pulled together some favourite people shots from recent trips, added some from slightly longer ago travels in India, and started to experiment. Here for Leanne’s Monochrome Madness are some of the more successful results.
Another Indian fisherman, this time on a beach in Kovalam, Kerala
Taken at a music and dance festival in Mehrangarh Fort, Jodhpur
A musician at the Amber Fort, Jaipur
A security guard at a Jain temple in Jaisalmer
At the temple in Manakamana, Nepal
Carrying building materials in Bandipur, Nepal
In Ban Xong Ja minority village, northern Laos
A young Buddhist nun at Futarasan Shrine in Nikko, Japan
Drinking sake in Takayama, Japan
On the streets of Takayama, Japan
Selling incense and frankincense in the Al Haffa souk, Salalah, Oman
In Muttrah fish market, Muscat, Oman
In the market in Salalah, Oman
Our guide Hussein in Salalah’s Grand Mosque, Oman
And to finish, one from Colombia, taken in Guatapé