Black and white photo of sea stacks
CBWC,  Photographic techniques,  Themed galleries,  Travel galleries

Gallery: reflecting on black and white

No one can see their reflection in running water; it is only in still water that we can see.

Taoist proverb

It is true that in nature still water provides the best reflections.

So most of the photos I have selected for Cee’s black & white reflections challenge are of reflections in water – but not all of them.

All of these photos started life as colour images and were processed using Silver Efex. In some cases I prefer the colour original, in others I think these edits are more successful. See what you think – I have included a gallery of some of the original images at the foot of the post.

Reflections in water

Black and white photo of reflections in a lake

An Icelandic landscape near Dyrholaey on the south coast

Black and white photo of reflections in a lake

The crater of Mount Paektu reflected in its lake (shot taken from North Korea, but this opposite shore of the lake is actually in China)

Black and white photo of reeds reflected in still water

Reeds in the Okavango Delta

Black and white photo of a few sticks reflected in water

More reeds in the Okavango Delta, this time a more abstract treatment

Small tree growing in water

A young mangrove taking root in the lagoon at Souimanga Lodge in the Sine-Saloum region of Senegal

So far I have concentrated on landscapes but buildings and other structures can be reflected in water too.

Black and white photo of tall buildings in mist, reflected in water

An Abu Dhabi sunrise, reflected in the still waters of the lagoon, part of the Persian Gulf

Sepia photo of old Oriental style bridge

The Japanese Covered Bridge in Hoi An, given a sepia treatment to emphasise its age

We don’t need a large expanse of water to create a reflection; even a puddle will do!     

Church reflected upside down in a puddle on cobbled stones

San Michele in Foro, Lucca, reflected in a puddle on the piazza

Building reflected upside down in a puddle on cobbled stones

Another puddle, this one in the Old Town of Tallinn

Man-made reflections

The following reflections are made in man-made objects rather than in water

Black and white photo of landscape reflected in car mirror

Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear – road tripping in the Grand Teton NP, WY

Black and white photo of modern building

A minaret reflected in a modern office block, Abu Dhabi

Set of round mirrors reflecting people and buildings

Multiple reflections in an art installation in London’s Canary Wharf area

And a couple of very abstract-looking shots that are actually reflections on the walls of the MoPOP building in Seattle

Finally, here as promised, is a selection of the colour originals, including several of those I am inclined to prefer to the B&W edits. As always, click on any image to open them full-size.


Do share your thoughts, I'd love to hear from you! And please include your name in case WP marks you 'anonymous' - thank you