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Monochrome v Colour - A Side Study of Visual Impact

by Editor Rob Darby  
Published the 5th of March 2021

 
'Children of Nepal' by Yvette Depaepe

 

 


'Children of Nepal – monochrome version' by Yvette Depaepe

 

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n/t by Ibrahim Nabeel

 

 


n/t by Ibrahim Nabeel

 

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For many of us, our first steps into photography didn’t start in the realm of black and white. For others, however, black and white film photography may have been where their journey began. It is likely true that where one begins informs their artistic path, at least initially. For others, monochrome photography may be a new avenue of expression.

 


'A Quarantine View' by Rob Darby

 

 


'City Living' by Rob Darby



I wrote this article as an exploration into how an image in colour or monochrome may evoke different emotions from the viewer, or may focus the viewer on elements that the author wants to emphasize. I have often received comments from the 1X community, as well as in other forums, where a photographer critiquing one of my images will say “this image would be better in Black and White” and just as often people may comment that they would prefer to see the image in colour.

 


'The Gondolier 2' by Carmine Chiriacò

 

 


'on the canal' by Carmine Chiriacò

 

For this article, I have selected a number of images which were published or submitted in both colour and monochrome by photographers here on 1X.

In some cases, both were accepted by curators, in some cases not. 
But the side-by-side comparison of the same (or similar) image rendered in colour and black and white, may reveal the different impact that one or the other approach has on the work’s visual appeal and the emotion that the author intended to invoke.

 


'Goldeneye' by Jure Kravanja

 

 


'Barrel Sky' by Jure Kravanja

 

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'salt production' by Rolf Endermann

 

 


'salt production BW' by Rolf Endermann

 

So, which is preferable? Well, I would argue that this question is often a matter of aesthetics and personal preference, although without question some images are clearly stronger in colour and others, in monochrome. In some cases, both images are compelling, but for different reasons. The better question might be: how does the mood or subject change with a monochrome conversion? Sometimes, actually quite often, many of us will process an image in greyscale and sRBG to see which captures the mood or the essence of the moment that we want to emphasize.

 


#1 Veins of the Earth' by Peter Svoboda, MQEP

 

 


'Wide River Shapes' by Peter Svoboda, MQEP

 

Over time, I began to ask myself the question: what specifically is it that makes one version “preferable” over another? Do monochrome images evoke different emotions or turn the viewer’s focus onto an aspect of the image that gets lost in the cacophony of colour? Is colour an essential element of the image and does it positively contribute to the mood or the story the author is telling?

 


'Passion' by mike kreiten

 

 


'Tensionette' by mike kreiten

 

Not long ago, just before my father passed away, he told me something that I never knew about my grandfather. He was a landscape black and white film photographer back in the mid part of the last century. Since learning this, when I see a monochrome image waves of nostalgia take me back to an earlier time.

 


'Venecian simbols' by milan malovrh

 

 


'Bridge of Venice 1' by milan malovrh



For me, monochrome images evoke remembrances of the first images I saw when I was young. The moody and stunning landscapes of Ansel Adams. The amazing portraitures of Annie Lebowitz. The street photography of Bresson. These artists were able to capture the beauty and mood of a place or a person with whites, greys, and blacks, using contrast, shadow, texture, and shades of tonality to create drama and mood. The face of an elderly man or the granite face of Half Dome in Yosemite may evoke different emotions in monochrome than they do in colour. Not better or worse, necessarily, but certainly different.

 


'Hong Kong Island' by Daniel Murphy

 

 


'Hong Kong Monochrome' by Daniel Murphy

 

I guess it is safe to say, that a reader’s response to an image is likely reflective of their own particular way of seeing. Some “see” better in black and white. Monochrome images offer no distraction from disparate colours that might, for some people, detract from the core subject of the image or the story they want to convey. The textures, gradations of tonality, shadows, and shapes focus the viewer differently. There is often a rawness to monochrome images. Subjects reveal their organic essence and are stripped bare of the safety of colour.

 


'Waves' by Arnon Orbach

 

 


'Up up and away – Rishon LeZion' by Arnon Orbach

 

In other images, colour is integral to the success of an image. For example, if one is trying to capture the subtle beauty of a winter sunrise, the soft yellows and blues of an icy scene might add an element of intrigue: the icy cold and the pale sunlight might be more striking in colour to bring out the contrast between the warmth of the sun and cold of the ice.

 


'Two Trees' by Uschi Hermann

 

 


'Winterland' by Uschi Hermann


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'Merging of Minds.. (pano version)' by Radu Andrei Alexandru

 

'Unjustified Sadness..' by Radu Andrei Alexandru

 

The same image in monochrome focuses the viewer on the textures of the sky, or wind-blown striations in the snow, the contrast between the light of the sun and the dark shadows in the trees. Or perhaps a monochrome image of this winter scene may accentuate the sense of clarity and cold in the landscape, with gradations of tonality providing the separation of elements instead of colour.

 


'Mountain Sunrise' by Rob Darby

 

 


n/t by Rob Darby

 

All art is subjective, as we all know too well in the curation process on 1X or the selection of an artist for a particular exhibition.

Whether your preferred genre is monochrome or colour, or both, the most important question that we demand of ourselves to answer is whether a particular image is rendered in a way that maximizes its emotional and visual impact on the viewer.

 


n/t by NIKA

 

 


n/t by NIKA

 
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'Gooderham Building' by Carmine Chiriacó

 


'The Walk' by Carmine Chiriacó

 
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'Drive Through' by Andreas Agazzi

 

 


'Over the Top' by Andreas Agazzi

  

Write
Thanks Rob for this inspiring article!
Thank you very much Yvette Depaepe and Rob Darby! Have a nice weekend for members 1x!
Thanks, dear Nika !!!
Thank you Nika! Have a great weekend.
Hello Rob and Yvette. A very good article that I can identify with as I often do both. As you write and I agree, I often make the decision to do bw or colour depending on how the final image makes me feel, and strangely enough I often already know which I will choose when I am actually capturing it, that is where the decision process begins for me. This sums up your last paragraph well. My decisions are not always based on aesthetics or if the image will be the most visually pleasing as possible. Meaning, I am not certain if the visual reaction impact I want to evoke is - wow this is beautiful - or oh this touches me - or oh wow a cool effect-! Or of all the above! It's my daily existential photography choices I have to make ( lol ;-) Last year, our renowned Canadian photojournalist Ted Grant passed away at the age of 90. His famous quote from long ago -“When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!”-. It is certainly one way of looking at things and I agree partially. But then if you know of the colour photography of Fred Herzog during the 50's and 60's, there is SO much soul! Brilliant photographer Stephen Shore is another that comes to mind. There are way too many to talk about here. Thank-you for the interesting article. Regards, Joe
Thanks for your fine reaction and comment in depth, dear Joe !
Joe - what a great and thoughtful response. I love the quote from Ted Grant. It would have made a great addition to the article!
Thank you very much, Rob Darby, for choosing two works, which I really appreciate Thanks also to Yvette Depaepe for this article Very important and useful article Wonderful and inspiring works
Thanks a lot, Ibrahim!
My pleasure Ibrahim. Your work is amazing and I was happy to find 2 similar images to help illustrate the points I wanted to make in the article.
It is a really very interesting and useful article. Thanks a lot for the authors.
Thank you Izabella!
Thanks, dear Rob, for sharing your thoughts on the issue. It is an issue most photographers face on a regular basis; each form can be chosen pending on which form can serve best the emotion one wants to evoke. Personally, I prefer color photography which, in my humble opinion, can evoke more varied emotions than B&W. Thanks for including my photos in the article, much appreciated. Finally, my compliments to Yvette for her contribution as always. Have a great weekend.
Thank you, dear Arnon !
Thank you Arnon. I hope all is well.
Many thanks to Yvette and Rob who took the trouble to compile the corresponding images for this article impressively.I converge many of my images in BW and then decide according to feeling or form of the day which variant I upload. I find most of the pictures shown here appealing in colour as well as in BW, I think it is a matter of personal taste which variant one favours. Thank you for this interesting report. Many greetings ROLF Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
Thanks for your appreciation, dear Rolf!
Thank you Rolf. I was particularly happy to find your images in both color and monochrome. They are both amazing, but they have different feelings. Have a great weekend.
Thanks Rob, for this fine article about the visual impact of BW images versus colour images. Congratulations to the authors ... Cheers, Yvette
Thank you, Dear Yvette for the opportunities and the thoughtful oversight of the articles and the magazine.
Beautiful article, thanks Rob and Yvette ! Some will surely find the black and white version of a certain photo more beautiful than the color version or vice versa but I wonder what the motive is of some photographers ? Is it not just a search for reaffirmation, a desire for eternal fame and one more shown on the front page because of the lack of other suitable material at a certain time ? And not so much to claim that the black and white version is as good as the color version. Are we not all looking for recognition to put ourselves as much as possible in the center of attention ? Just my thought ...
Thanks for your deep insight and thoughts, Marc! Have a great weekend ahead!
Marc - your comment has been in my head since I read it yesterday. You raise a very valid perspective and one that, if I look at myself in the mirror critically, I think applies too often to my own work. Sometimes, the desire to be “published” is intoxicating and reminds me that we all are in search of affirmation. Perhaps, that affirmation should come from inside ourselves consistently while remaining open to the opportunities that criticism and rejection offer in helping to develop skill - speaking for myself only. Thank you for the comment and I must say that I greatly admire your work. Have a good weekend.
I strongly appreciate your honest opinion Rob, thanks a lot !
Senior Critics' review on 'The special bio-tech watch' by F4 passion

by Yvette Depaepe in collaboration with Mike Kreiten, Head of the Senior Critics.
Published the 4th of March 2021


1x has a unique feature the founders are very proud of: the photo critique. Members can submit pictures to a team of knowledgeable senior critics. Their feedback and different suggestions are useful, interesting and enriching even for the best of us.


Today, I like to present you three critiques on different versions from the image
'The special bio-tech watch' by F4 passion.  

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FIRST VERSION OF  'The special bi-tech watch'.
This "special bio-tech watch" is a new challenge for me to combine both of the similarity and the contrast of soft flower and hard gear in one composition.
Any comment and suggestion on improving the subject matter, composition, mood, technical quality and originality is very much appreciated.
It would be very helpful if the Critique team could advise me on how to improve this work.
Thanks in advance!  Fukunaga. 



'The special bio-tech watch I' by F4 passion


Senior Critic Darlene Hewson
 
Hi Fukunaga,  I quite like the concept. I do like the pinks and greys together - so the colour palette is quite pleasing. I do wish there wasn't grass or straw (whatever that is in the top right corner). Perhaps a piece of grey paper or fabric would work better as this would ensure you were sticking to a constant grey and pink format.

I think the biggest issue with this for me personally, is although I do like the water droplets on the flowers, my brain instantly realizes that there should also be water droplets on the watch. Not sure if you agree or not and this is just my opinion.

This is creative and as I said earlier - the colours are quite pleasing together.

F4 passion 
Thanks for your advice, Darlene! Exactly what I am looking for. Colour coordination is a great point. Water drops on the watch panel will help to enhance reality I believe. I will try a new version following your suggestions. Fukunaga. 

 

Senior Critic Calin Hanchevici
Dear Fukunaga, thank you for sharing the image with us and including exposure details. It is a clever image, creative, and well executed. The contrast of colours and textures works very well for me.
Besides the observations Darlene made, I have few of my own, and please keep in mind they are simply personal opinions.
First thing I notice is that the focus is not uniform throughout the image. The petals of the flower underneath the mechanism are out of focus (mainly on top), and the focus on the right flower is a bit soft, mainly at its top and right part.
The hay/dry grass is a bit too small for me, and it becomes a distraction. Ideally it should match the flowers in a way, maybe fresh blades of grass, or simply nothing.

Framing-wise, I feel this image would work much better in a square format, with a bit more space around the watch (not cropping top and right part). You would have beautiful curves in the image and the flowers be stronger.

It is a very creative image, well executed, and the above are simply things that I noticed. I hope you will find some useful between them.

F4 passion 
Thank you so much Calin! Your suggestions together with the ones from Darlene, are the best gifts I got this morning! Yes, you are right. The flowers are taken separately and I failed to keep a natural focus balance among them. I've prepared a set of new shots and hope I can find a good balance. The back ground grass, have no idea yet but definitely will try to make it more "matching" the subjects. And finally, the composition...  sure, I will try a square crop!   Fukunaga.

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SECOND VERSION OF  'The special bio-tech watch'
This is the second edition of my "Special bio-watch"
The great advice I got  from the Critique team on previous version gave me a lot of inspiration to improve this image.
I hope that the new processing of this photo reflects the suggestions about the composition, colour combination, technical details (water drops, focus) after trying several versions.  I would be very happy to have the opinion of the Senior Critics on this one too.  Fukunaga.
 

 


'The special bio-watch II' by F4 passion

 

Member Giuseppe Satriani
I am not part of the Senior Critics team but I followed the history of this image.
My point of view is that, if you want to show the combination between natural and gear objects, this composition is without any doubt much better than previous one.  Here the viewer can fully see both the gear and the flowers.

Just by curiosity I would like to know how you improved the focus according to Calin's suggestion? 
Did you replace the flowers by new ones in this second version?


Anyway it  has been a pleasure to meet you here and I hope we can stay in touch. Ciao Giuseppe.

F4 passion
Thank you very much,  for your compliments Giuseppe!  Concerning the 'focus', I took another set of pictures, each with the three flowers on the same place to get a good focus balance and chose the best out to replace the old ones.  Yes, lets keep in touch !  Ciao Fukunaga

 

Senior Critic Calin Hanchevici 
Thank you for sharing this second version with us too, and especially for keeping the old one so other people can compare and learn from it. This version is much better in my opinion, the focus is very good throughout the image, the light seems uniform (and you have rotated the flowers a such that the light seems to come from the left). Spraying water on the watch makes the image more realistic, overall and excellent image!

The only thing I would maybe change is to rotate the dry flower a bit so that its petal is not under the big flower petal, but in between the gap (like you cleverly have done it with the rest). This is just nit-picking.

F4 passion 
Thank you for your continuous follow-up, Calin! And really happy for that you like this version better. This time, I tried a f9 aperture instead of f2.8 and put all the flowers together to make it easier to get a better focus balance. Yes, I tried to align all the elements (the gears, the flowers,, the crown and the drops) with a virtual light source from the top-left. A new challenge this time is tried to show a battle among the flowers (LOL) and the "try" one is the victim (upset down, under the "foot" of the big one). But, but,... it seems that the story is not well presented.  
From the point of view of our human being, it is a bio-watch; From the point of view of the flowers, the smaller ones fight for their own home base against the biggest one... However, it is obviously that the battle story is not obviously depicted.

 

Senior Critic Darlene Hewson 
This one is beautiful, Fukunaga! Great background...water drops on the watch itself - all makes it look more believable. I think the pinks are so beautiful against the grey tones. I actually could see this framed, hanging on a wall!!

F4 passion 
Thanks, Darlene.  Your words are really encouraging!  I am so happy that your suggestions took me in the right direction to improve this photo. Best regards, Fukunaga.

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THIRD VERSION OF  'The special bio-tech watch'
This is the 3rd version of my work "The special bio-watch".
This time, I tried a full colour background for the purpose of comparison.
In the 2nd version, I tried a gray watch panel and gray wall paper.
I love the combination of pink flower and gray background very much.
A final try came to my mind by doing a full research of colour combination. The pink-golden-green colour set looks like a good choice from quit a lot of combinations.
Of course any advice is welcome for this version too ;-)
Big thanks on the forehand.  Fukunaga.

 


'The special bio-watch III' by F4 passion.

 

Senior Critic Theo Luycx 
I did not give any comment yet but Calin and Darlene gave you very good suggestions. So please listen to Calin and Darlene. But I like your idea very much so what I will do is now is giving you my personal vision …

The earlier grey tone was the best for my taste.  It is restful and gives more attention to the middle of the image.  If you want you can play also a little with various grey tones.

According to the centre of the image, I also have a remark.
You placed the flowers on the diameter of the gears and that is good to create a nice rhythm.  But I think that the flower below takes a way too much of the attention.  The eye is immediately led to that flower. I would make it smaller and not overlapping the other flowers.  Try to find a good balance.

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Critique is also open to all members, and we learn together here. If you see an image you'd like to comment on, your words would be welcome.

Write
Hello Joe, Thank you very much for your great comments/suggestions below. Yes, I'm working on a new grey version and will try my best to make the feeling more realistic (the soft delicate petals vs the rough steel teeth!). Best wishes, F4 passion (Fukunaga)
You are most welcome. You had a wonderful idea and already a very good image to build on, all that was needed was some refinement and final touches. Nice work Fukunaga!
Thank Joe! So far, I was focused on issues, like composition, color coordination, light and it is time for me to handle the details that help depicts the initial theme: flower vs gear (a reflection of nature vs human being--- a theme too big to address (LOL)) Have a wonderful weekend! Fukunaga
Hello Yvette, Thank you so much for notify me this big news! I just still cannot believe that my trial works can go published on 1x magazine and other great 1x locations. What a great honor! Would like to say thanks to senior Critic Calin, Darlene, Theo, who have repeatedly granted me wonderful advices that encouraged and inspired me to challenge my own limitations. Just like I told Mike, the head of the Critique team, I believe the Critique function is the core stone that connects 1x photographers, like me, to the professionals behind 1x website. This great function makes 1x different and attractive. Thanks also go to Gluseppe, a 1x friend who followed my every new trials and, each time, his warm words made me became more and more confident. So thank you very much Gluseppe! Best wishes, F4 passion (Fukunaga)
It is true that the critique forum is a unique feature of 1x, Fukunaga. My pleasure to put it in the spotlights through the magazine!
Thank you Yvette! Hope it can boost Critique activities a bit! Best regards, Fukunaga
A whole lot of very good suggestions on how to improve this photo. First of all the idea is wonderful. The version I like the least is the last version, to me the pink-golden-green colour combination does not work at all. I would of stayed with the grey and pink tones and I would of given all of it a slight boost of texture and clarity. We really need to feel those drops, to see the watch gear mechanisms about to grind those flower petals. It is that contrast between the soft delicate petals and the rough steel teeth of those gears that will give this image a powerful eye-catching impact and tell a story. That is the way I see and that is the way I would like to feel it. That is how I interpret your battle story. The dry flower is great and maybe you can tear it up in the gear, the machinery destroyed it...yes the symbolism is obvious. All the best to you.
Hello Joe, Thank you very much for your great comments/suggestions below. Yes, I'm working on a new grey version and will try my best to make the feeling more realistic (the soft delicate petals vs the rough steel teeth!). Best wishes, F4 passion (Fukunaga)
Yvette, Thank you for this very nice presented project. And F4 had earlier a published photo "the Adventurer" after three Critique session. And also F4 thank you it is nice to work with you.
Thank you very much Theo for you great advices! I'm working on a new grey version follows yours idea. It will be a lighter grey version and hope it can be better in terms of showing up more contrast between the soft flower and the hard gears! Again, thank you! Best wishes, F4 passion( Fukunaga)
Thanks dear Theo !!! My pleasure to promote the critique forum ;-)
A great guide to study. Thank you Yvette.
And thanks to the Senior Critics too, of course !!! Cheers, dear Irena ...
Love your Final image F4 Passion..
Thank you so much Daniel! Best wishes, Fukunaga
Wonderful article Yvette so well put together thank you. So many good points of 1x.com coming together in one place.
Thanks for your appreciation, dear Daniel !
Dear Fukunaga, thanks for submitting your work to the critique forum and thanks to the Senior Critics for the great suggestions they made to improve this image. Cheers, Yvette
Dear Yvette, thank you so much for giving me this BIG surprise! My great honor! I hope the conversions between the Senior Critic team, Calin, Darlene, Theo and me could give some hints to other 1x photographers. (Sorry, I wrote a reply to you the other way because I missed the "reply" check here) Best wishes, Fukunaga
Beautiful article, thanks Rob and Yvette ! Some will surely find the black and white version of a certain photo more beautiful than the color version or vice versa but I wonder what the motive is of some photographers ? Is it not just a search for reaffirmation, a desire for eternal fame and one more shown on the front page because of the lack of other suitable material at a certain time ? And not so much to claim that the black and white version is as good as the color version. Are we not all looking for recognition to put ourselves as much as possible in the center of attention ? Just my thought ...
Thanks for your deep insight and thoughts, Marc! Have a great weekend ahead!
Marc - your comment has been in my head since I read it yesterday. You raise a very valid perspective and one that, if I look at myself in the mirror critically, I think applies too often to my own work. Sometimes, the desire to be “published” is intoxicating and reminds me that we all are in search of affirmation. Perhaps, that affirmation should come from inside ourselves consistently while remaining open to the opportunities that criticism and rejection offer in helping to develop skill - speaking for myself only. Thank you for the comment and I must say that I greatly admire your work. Have a good weekend.
I strongly appreciate your honest opinion Rob, thanks a lot !
Results Contest: Majestic Mountains

by Yvette Depaepe 
Published the 3rd of March 2021


The last evidence of majestic artefacts of nature are mountains.
  Their beauty has inspired artists for centuries. Now, instead of classic paintings, we have landscape photographers to capture breathtaking mountain views.  The submissions to this contest were simply stunning.

The winners with the most votes are:

1st place: Hamed Qane  
2nd place: Burger Jochen
3rd place: Sabine Weise

Congratulations to the winners and honourable mentions and thanks to all the participants in the contest 'Majestic Mountains'.

 

'Eyes that Speak' is the topic of the currently running contest.
Worlds change when eyes meet. They tell more than words could ever say.
Eyes are one - well two - main focus in portraits. Expressive eyes will grab the viewer.
But close-up photographs of the eye also are amongst the most stunning images that exist.

This contest will end at midnight on Sunday the 14th of March 2021.
The sooner you upload your submission the more chance you have to gather the most votes.

If you haven't uploaded your photo yet, click here.
Good luck to all the participants...

 


1st place: by Hamed Qane

 

 

2nd place: by Burger Jochen  

 

 


3rd place: by Sabine Weise

 

 

HONOURABLE  MENTIONS

 


by Barbara Read 

 

 

 
by MJoão Ferreira

 

 


by Claudio Moretti 

 

 

 
by Pedro Uranga 

 

 


by Valeriy Shcherbina 

 

 


by Michael Jurek

 

 


by Emily Kelly

 

Write
Thank you so much
Hello Yvette, Thank you so much for notify me this big news! I just still cannot believe that my trial works can go published on 1x magazine and other great 1x locations. What a great honor! Would like to say thanks to senior Critic Calin, Darlene, Theo, who have repeatedly granted me wonderful advices that encouraged and inspired me to challenge my own limitations. Just like I told Mike, the head of the Critique team, I believe the Critique function is the core stone that connects 1x photographers, like me, to the professionals behind 1x website. This great function makes 1x different and attractive. Thanks also go to Gluseppe, a 1x friend who followed my every new trials and, each time, his warm words made me became more and more confident. So thank you very much Gluseppe! Best wishes, F4 passion (Fukunaga)
It is true that the critique forum is a unique feature of 1x, Fukunaga. My pleasure to put it in the spotlights through the magazine!
Thank you Yvette! Hope it can boost Critique activities a bit! Best regards, Fukunaga
A whole lot of very good suggestions on how to improve this photo. First of all the idea is wonderful. The version I like the least is the last version, to me the pink-golden-green colour combination does not work at all. I would of stayed with the grey and pink tones and I would of given all of it a slight boost of texture and clarity. We really need to feel those drops, to see the watch gear mechanisms about to grind those flower petals. It is that contrast between the soft delicate petals and the rough steel teeth of those gears that will give this image a powerful eye-catching impact and tell a story. That is the way I see and that is the way I would like to feel it. That is how I interpret your battle story. The dry flower is great and maybe you can tear it up in the gear, the machinery destroyed it...yes the symbolism is obvious. All the best to you.
Hello Joe, Thank you very much for your great comments/suggestions below. Yes, I'm working on a new grey version and will try my best to make the feeling more realistic (the soft delicate petals vs the rough steel teeth!). Best wishes, F4 passion (Fukunaga)
Yvette, Thank you for this very nice presented project. And F4 had earlier a published photo "the Adventurer" after three Critique session. And also F4 thank you it is nice to work with you.
Thank you very much Theo for you great advices! I'm working on a new grey version follows yours idea. It will be a lighter grey version and hope it can be better in terms of showing up more contrast between the soft flower and the hard gears! Again, thank you! Best wishes, F4 passion( Fukunaga)
Thanks dear Theo !!! My pleasure to promote the critique forum ;-)
A great guide to study. Thank you Yvette.
And thanks to the Senior Critics too, of course !!! Cheers, dear Irena ...
Love your Final image F4 Passion..
Thank you so much Daniel! Best wishes, Fukunaga
Wonderful article Yvette so well put together thank you. So many good points of 1x.com coming together in one place.
Thanks for your appreciation, dear Daniel !
Dear Fukunaga, thanks for submitting your work to the critique forum and thanks to the Senior Critics for the great suggestions they made to improve this image. Cheers, Yvette
Dear Yvette, thank you so much for giving me this BIG surprise! My great honor! I hope the conversions between the Senior Critic team, Calin, Darlene, Theo and me could give some hints to other 1x photographers. (Sorry, I wrote a reply to you the other way because I missed the "reply" check here) Best wishes, Fukunaga
Beautiful article, thanks Rob and Yvette ! Some will surely find the black and white version of a certain photo more beautiful than the color version or vice versa but I wonder what the motive is of some photographers ? Is it not just a search for reaffirmation, a desire for eternal fame and one more shown on the front page because of the lack of other suitable material at a certain time ? And not so much to claim that the black and white version is as good as the color version. Are we not all looking for recognition to put ourselves as much as possible in the center of attention ? Just my thought ...
Thanks for your deep insight and thoughts, Marc! Have a great weekend ahead!
Marc - your comment has been in my head since I read it yesterday. You raise a very valid perspective and one that, if I look at myself in the mirror critically, I think applies too often to my own work. Sometimes, the desire to be “published” is intoxicating and reminds me that we all are in search of affirmation. Perhaps, that affirmation should come from inside ourselves consistently while remaining open to the opportunities that criticism and rejection offer in helping to develop skill - speaking for myself only. Thank you for the comment and I must say that I greatly admire your work. Have a good weekend.
I strongly appreciate your honest opinion Rob, thanks a lot !
Wildlife in Motion

by Editor Rob Li
Published the 1st of March 2021

 

This article is inspired by 'Dancers in Motion'  written by Yvette depaepe 

When we talk about wildlife photography, what pops in most people’s mind are sharp clear photos with great still moments and stunning details. These photos are typically achieved by using fast shutter speed and good lock-on focus.

However, many wildlife photographers are looking for creative ways to produce different results. One of the methods is to utilize slow shutter speed to capture the motion of wild animals. This method is especially used for bird photography. As a result, it brings out the artistic rhythm and vibrancy of the wildlife and creates photos that are more dynamic in portraying motion and fluidity.



'Spring time' by Milan Malovrh


Capturing a good-blurred photo in wildlife photography can be as difficult as getting a sharp one, if not more challenging. The success percentage for slow shutter capture is relatively low because slow shutter speed, camera movement, and moving speed of the target can all have a great impact on the result. The general rule of thumb for slow motion photograph is to start at around 1/50, then dial down the shutter speed to 1/30, or even 1/15, while continuously shooting (in burst mode). This can help greatly to increase your chance of success.


The slow shutter capture can be achieved in three ways:

Mount the camera on the tripod, using low shutter speed without moving the camera. The slow shutter speed in combination with a super-telephoto lens can magnify the shake of the camera. Tripod can effectively eliminate the camera shake.

Using the panning technique, through which the photographer cam moves the camera along with the object while shooting at a low shutter speed. The key is to move the camera at the same speed as the subject.  Panning requires a lot of exercises. It can be achieved by handholding, mounting the camera on tripod or monopod.

Using the two-camera system, one to freeze the moment or action at high speed, the other to capture the motion with low speed. Milan Malovrh 1X - milan malovrh - Latest photos has a superb portfolio using this technique.

 

As photographers, we all know the importance of lighting. When shooting in a low light environment, or in bad weather, low shutter speed can not only get the motion of the movement, but can also help lower the ISO, which is essential for the photo quality.

 


'Dream Flight' by John Fan

 

 


'Fly' by Larry Deng

 

 


'SLOW SHUTTER WILDEBEEST' by Jaco Marx

 

 


'Pelican' by Qingsong Wang

 

 


1/25” by Eddy Helsen

 

 


'A Mighty bird' by Cheng Chang

 

 


'The Catch' by Corry DeLaan

 

 


'Emerging' by Marsel van Oosten


Motion blur created by Panning can effectively help to smooth and minimize the distracting background.



'Spoonbill in flight' by Rob Li

 

 


'Rose in the Air' by Phillip Chang

 

 


'Flamingos in Dawn' by David Hua

 

 


'Slow motion horses' by Xavier Ortega

 

 


'Egretta garzetta' by duketung

 

 


n/t by Katsuhiko Akazawa

 

When shooting large group of wild bird flying, slow shutter speed created these stunning pictures of the magic, scale, and grandeur of bird flying:



'Migrating Snow Geese in Slow Motion' by Jane

 

 


'Early flight-2' by 李从军 / Austin Li

 

 


'Red-Heads' by Picart

 

 


'Natural art' by Roberto Parmiggiani

 

In certain scenarios, the blur motion can emphasize stillness, which creates another dynamic aspect within the photo:



'Die Invasion der Bergfinken' by Stefan Völkel

 

 


'Before Dawn – A Day of Snow Goose Migration' by Jun Zuo

Finally, the two-camera technique utilized by Milan Malovrh has generated many stunning slow-motion with unique sharpness within the photos:



'Landing' by Milan Malovrh

 

 


'Love dance' by Milan Malovrh


Write
Thank you very much for this inspiring report!
Thank you very much for the Author @Rob Li, @Yvette Depaepe. I have great lesson here. The images are so stunning
Thanks for your appreciation, my friend!
Wow, great images :) I just love these kind of photos. i will say it`s much more difficult to achieve such result, than an "ordinary" sharp one :)
Great collection of images from great photographers! Love the birds in motion. Appreciate it! Big shout out to Rob and Yvette! All the best!
Thank you, Jaco ! Your big shout out reached Bruges ;-)
Wonderful images, thank very much Yvette !!!
Merci Thierry!
祝贺所有摄影师,高手,非常精彩的镜头!
Great collection of wonderful images Rob Li - First Class all of them... Thank you Rob and dear Tvette for your hard work. Cheers. Larry
Thank you, Larry! MF
Congratulations to the authors of these wonderful wildlife shots in motion and thanks to Editor Rob Li for this fine article. Cheers, Yvette
Beautiful article, thanks Rob and Yvette ! Some will surely find the black and white version of a certain photo more beautiful than the color version or vice versa but I wonder what the motive is of some photographers ? Is it not just a search for reaffirmation, a desire for eternal fame and one more shown on the front page because of the lack of other suitable material at a certain time ? And not so much to claim that the black and white version is as good as the color version. Are we not all looking for recognition to put ourselves as much as possible in the center of attention ? Just my thought ...
Thanks for your deep insight and thoughts, Marc! Have a great weekend ahead!
Marc - your comment has been in my head since I read it yesterday. You raise a very valid perspective and one that, if I look at myself in the mirror critically, I think applies too often to my own work. Sometimes, the desire to be “published” is intoxicating and reminds me that we all are in search of affirmation. Perhaps, that affirmation should come from inside ourselves consistently while remaining open to the opportunities that criticism and rejection offer in helping to develop skill - speaking for myself only. Thank you for the comment and I must say that I greatly admire your work. Have a good weekend.
I strongly appreciate your honest opinion Rob, thanks a lot !
Francesco Martinelli : Pure and honest street photography

by Yvette Depaepe
Published the 26th of February 2021


I'm really thrilled to introduce you to Francesco Martinelli  - a fine and excellent street photographer - because sometimes it feels as if we haven’t enough street photography on 1x in spite of some very talented artists - in fact, we need a kind of revival. 

Francesco is one of those artists.  He loves to observe human activities and their interaction in the urban context. To him, street captures must be true and honest, consisting of moments that really happened. A decisive moment lasts only 1/1000 of a second.  That is what excites Francesco the most. 
He says: “In my opinion, true joy is not the post production but the way you are able to catch the moment”.
Enjoy this gallery of great images and enjoy as much as I did.
Don't forget to smile or to be touched ;-)

 


'he's watching'

 

Dear Francesco, please tell us about yourself, your hobbies and other jobs.
Before starting to answer the questions, I want to thank the entire editorial team and particularly Yvette for introducing me to the public through this interview.  I really feel honoured.

I was born in Florence and I deeply love my city. The office I'm working in is right behind the Uffizi. I deal with topography and I am surveyor. Basically, my profession is to measure the earth, trace roads, buildings and tunnels. I live in the countryside in the Chianti area because I find it more relaxing and also because I like good wine. I live with a beautiful woman and I have a son. I like sports; I have been swimming competitively for many years, but now I stopped. I also like to walk and to do outdoor activities. I love rock music and psychedelic rock, which are a fundamental part of my life. My favourite group "as my logo shows" is Pink Floyd and I love to listen to their music again and again. I never get tired; they are my vital energy! And last but not least, my strong passion for street photography.

 


'Watch out! It's slippery'

 

 


'the other side'

 

 


'urban glamour'

 

How has your history and life experiences affected your photography?
What I especially like to photograph are the people on the street in their daily life.
I really like to observe human activities and their interaction in the urban context.
In my opinion, the “street” must be true and honest, composed of moments that really happened.
I like trying to capture the decisive moment, or a particular situation, better if it’s humorous.
I imagine to be able smile through a shot, even for a single moment, and it makes me happy.

 


'Dreaming'

 

 


'if I catch you'

 

 


'3813 Vs 3814

 

I constantly try to imagine interesting situations even if all this is very difficult in the street! A great photographer called Cartier-Bresson talked about "capturing the decisive moment", unfortunately it is not a simple thing in the ‘street’, because the perfect image lasts only 1/1000 of a second; you can’t ask the subjects to pose. This is what excites me most, and I’m so happy when I get a result. In my opinion, true joy is not in the post production but in the way you are able to catch the moment.

 


'Love...'


Which are your most important experiences that has influenced your art?
I started with photography very early, I remember that I was fourteen years old and with the first money I earned working during the school holidays. I bought an analogue canon (ae-1 program if I am not mistaken) and then also a photographic enlarger. I started to print black and white using the bathroom as a darkroom, sticking the prints directly on the mirrors and glass. I can still hear my mother's screams! I still remember it… so, in order to satisfy my constant desire, I went out on the street to photograph people.

 


'HAIR'


What first attracted you to photography?
What attracted me first was to catch a certain moment in life for ever and to be able to review it. What I like in the street, is its faculty to remind me precisely of the moments I lived. I think it's wonderful!

 


'love is in the (h)air

 

Describe your overall photographic vision.
I think that photography is generally beautiful. Scrolling through the categories of 1x we find great artists, from abstract to wild life. Particularly, I l love those who do creative photography and those who get up very early in the morning to be able to see a sunrise and come back several times if the shots don’t satisfy them. Everything we like to do is beautiful! Concerning my personal photographic vision, I prefer not to define it within parameters, I just try to capture the flow of life, I am not a photographer but I can define myself as a narrator of urban scenes. However, when I photograph the street, I am the happiest man in the world. It’s like being a kid again!  I get curious again and I climb on a chair to see if my mother has hidden the Nutella from me behind the packets of pasta! That said, I call myself a street photographer, but the truth is that photography is beautiful, there are only different nuances.

 


'everyone on his own way'

 

Why are you so drawn by street photography?
It is the continuous mental stimulation, the research, to be ready to shoot knowing how you want to treat a certain scene from a photographic point of view. It is that infinite desire that pushes you to look for a new shot which is able to turn a moment into a story just with one “click”.

 

What makes you angry about street photography?
The trash bins which are always in the middle of the scenic frame you want to build, or people who suddenly step into the scene to take a selfie or to look for something in their bag just in the middle of what you are going to capture. Unfortunately, street photography is made up of moments and the intruder is always lurking.

 

What is more important to you, the mood/story behind your images or the technical perfection?
If we asked this question to a photographer who deals with architecture or abstract, he would surely answer that technical perfection is of fundamental importance. Or a creative photographer would answer that the mood is of fundamental importance in order to convey particular interior atmospheres, and I think that’s right. Personally, concerning my images, I prefer to give more importance to the story behind it.

 


'women and men'

 

What generally is your relationship to your subject matter beyond being an observer?  Do you prepare carefully the locations where you are intending to photograph?
I find it difficult to answer this question. I have sometimes asked it myself too.
The relationship is that, maybe I am what I photograph.
Yes, sometimes I find an interesting location and wait for the capture. This is what attracts me about street photography, it can be translated as a connivance between precognition and fatality. My only problem is that I always have little time…

 


'ton sur ton'

 

 


'I love Bulgaria'

 

 


'Social Distancing'

 

What gear do you use (camera, lenses, bag)?
I do not give particular importance to my photographic equipment, I just take the image, however I own a Nikon D300 with various Nikon lenses and a Canon 5d MarkIII with a fixed mounted 24-105 f / 4L IS USM.
Unfortunately, such equipment is not ideal for someone who makes the street, because it is too invasive – it should be better to have a small machine in order not to get noticed. Anyway, somehow, I manage.

 

What software do you use to process your images?
A very banal software capable of managing only levels, dynamic range and few other functions. I have never chosen to buy Photoshop, perhaps because I have always dedicated my passion to catch the moment in the right place at the right time. Who knows, maybe in the future I could dedicate myself to different projects and decide to buy it.

 

Can you tell us something more about your work flow?
I don't have a default workflow, basically my post-production is based only on few transformation steps, and if I like it visually it means "gone"!

 


'Giotto's way'

 

What is your most important advice to a beginner in Street Photography and how do you get started?
I don't feel good enough to give advice, the only thing I could suggest is to follow your instincts, to read a lot to enrich your imagination and to push your boundaries.



Who are your favourite photographers and more importantly, how has your appreciation of their work affected how you approach your own photography?
I am inspired by photographers who belong to the history of this beautiful art, I can mention Bresson, Erwitt, Berengo Gardin, Salgado etc. I don't try to emulate them, first because obviously I wouldn't be able to do it, and then because I don’t want it.  I only try to get some inspiration from them in order to learn how to tell life through images.

 


'They are coming...'

 

Describe your favourite photograph taken by you and why it is special to you?
I always tell myself that the best photograph I've taken is the one I'm going to take, but to be honest there's one I care about in particular, and it's "the man with the tricorn hat."

I'm excited about the way these children look at the street artist, it's a mixture of curiosity and the joy of seeing what they had never seen. They remind me a famous French poet and writer named Christian Bobin, who once said: 'Children are like sailors: wherever their eyes lay, it is the immense'.

 


'The man with the tricorn hat'

 

Is there anything else you wish to add and what do you think about 1X as a home base for your work?
1x is of fundamental importance to me. Here I can find exceptional photographers, who give great inspiration. When a picture of mine is approved by the curators, I feel really happy because it means that my work has been appreciated.

 


'free road!!!'

 

 


'Urban glamour'

 

Write
it is a pleasure to learn something about you and your photography here dear friend Francesco. Thank you very much. Many thanks also to Yvette for her work as an interviewer.
Hi Hans-Wolfgang, thanks a lot my friend for your continuous interest and support in my photography. I do appreciate it very much! Good light!
Good and interesting interview with a very good photographer! The paradox of his story about the intruders ruining the shot when they step into the other intruders camera vision ! I know what you mean Francesco. You are a witness and a actor of the scene, that is street photography. Francesco, you capture the story and make it your own with your style....you feel it when it is time to click, it is all about feelings and of course knowing where to stand. Bravo Francesco
Dear friend, the intruders sometimes damage the shot, but other times they can be an added value. It depends on the circumstances, sometimes I would like to stop and pose the subjects, but it would be useless because two minutes later another one would take over. In fact, it is much more difficult than you think to take a pose because it is not easy to let looks and poses interact with the viewer. This is why I really like your photos and I think you are a great artist. Your images are never dull and always performed with great skill in composition and lighting. I do appreciate you as a photographer. Thanks a lot Joe for your message.
What an amazing interview. It is as honest as the photography of this fine artist. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, without filter, with the rest of us. Grazie Francesco
Many thanks Rob! I am very glad that you liked my story, I really appreciate it very much! All the best!
Che bravo sei!! si sente la freschezza, il gusto, l'ironia, la gioia di fotografare. Un vero piacere guardare le tue foto!
Grazie mille Antonio e Giuliana, veramente felice ed onorato per questo vostro gradito commento. Buona luce
Francesco sei davvero grande... in ogni tuo scatto, con pochi elementi, riesci sempre a raccontare una storia e trasmettere sensazioni... !!! Complimenti sinceri per i tuoi lavori e per questa intervista che ho letto con molto interesse. Ciao
Ti ringrazio molto cara Fabiola per queste tue gentilissime parole ed anche per il continuo supporto che ricevo da te. Sono felice ed onorato. Buona luce!
Complimenti, Francesco! Articolo ampiamente meritato, vista l'eccellenza e l'umanità dei tuoi lavori. Buon weekend. :) And thank you, dear Yvette, for this beautiful article. Have a lovely weekend. :)
Grazie di cuore Francesco per il tuo continuo supporto, lo apprezzo davvero tanto! Auguro anche a te un buon fine settimana pieno di meravigliosa luce per i tuoi splendidi click!
Prego, Francesco! Sono io che ti ringrazio, sei fonte di genuina ispirazione... Ciao, buona luce anche a te! :)
Comlimenti Francesco, molta ironia e ricerca nei tuoi lavori. Un sincero apprezzamento anche all'umiltà con cui ti approcci all'intervista.
Grazie infinite Ivan, felicissimo che tu abbia letto l'intervista e altrettanto per aver lasciato questo tuo graditissimo commento, sono onorato! Buona luce
Complimenti Francesco !
Grazie mille Franco, ricevere un tuo apprezzamento è come per me ricevere l'oro! Buona luce!
Complimenti bella intervista ma soprattutto belle fotografie. Ciao
Grazie di cuore Roberto, felice e onorato di questo tuo messaggio, perché ammiro le tue stupende fotografie! Buona luce!
Beautiful, heartfelt interview. I follow Francesco for a while and delight each time he posts something. Especially since the pandemic time, the street photography is such a novel and interesting topic. Personally I appreciate a lot the story in an image, the candid side of it that is not easy to capture. The "decisive moment" is sometimes the millisecond after the its climax and this is where imagination of the viewer is actively involved. Living in NYC I am part of the diminishing street life the way it used to be. We have to adapt constantly. Thank you Yvette for another great story. Looking forward Francesco for your finds.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read the interview Mariuca! I'm very happy and honored for your nice words dear friend! Cheers, Francesco
Complimenti Francesco
Grazie mille Massimo per esserti fermato, sono felice e onorato di ciò. Buona luce!
Congratulations dear Francesco! I admire your work and are very pleased with your fine collaboration, my friend. A real pleasure to put you in the spotlights through this interview. Cheers, Yvette
Thank you so much dear Yvette, I am very happy and honored for having been able to talk to you, for giving me the opportunity to tell a little about my life and my photographic vision. Thanks again, for your kind words towards me. Warm regards!
It is always fascinating to get an insight to the life of a photographer you love and appreciate. Good street photography is for me the essence of photography, and it requires so much empathy and the ability to document a street scene in a way that the emotions and mood will be transferred to a frozen frame. Francesco is doing it so well that I visit his page regularly waiting for a new photo. My deep compliments on this interview to Francesco for sharing his story and photos with us and to Yvette for making it so accessible and such an enjoyable read. Have a great weekend.
Thank you, Arnon! My big pleasure to present such a talented street photographer to our readers !
Thank you very much for your great comment Arnon, I really appreciate it very much! All the best my dear friend :-)
A fine collection of photos and a meaningful interview with a great street photographer. Thanks to all who were involved.
Thanks Hans Martin!
Hi Hans Martin! I'm very glad you enjoyed my story, it makes me happy and honoured! Thank you so much!
What a great article! I love Francesco's work, so it's always very interesting and inspirational to know more about the person behind the composition. Francesco, you are a great street photographer! Congratulations for your beautiful images! Thank you dear Yvette for preparing this beautiful article to share with us.
I fully agree with you, dear Roxana ... Street photography seems to get a little lost lately here on 1x in spite of having great talented street photographers as members. And yes, Francesco's is a great artist when it comes to bring pure and honest street photographs.
Thank you so much dear Roxana, such wonderful words for me! I'm very grateful!