Color vs Black & White

I only ascribe to one social media platform, as it's the only one that doesn't fuck with me or my friends, and that is ELLO. I was on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and Instagram but all have their issues of privacy and copyright.

Moving on ...

I started the ELLO account showing both color and black & white images. Now back in the day all I shot was black & white film. So when I began to shoot digitally I turned the screen to black & white because that is the way I saw the world. But then you take those images into Lightroom and it turns them into color - so I saw most of my work in color for the very first time. 

I embraced this little switch ... as I started to post to Ello ... and there was an occasional color image. Then about four months ago I got the grandiose idea to ONLY do black & white and thus started converting these images that I had grown to love in color ... into the neutralness of black & white.

I tried to make them world. But as I converted these images, they all seemed to lose their power.

Then I saw an image of Ernst Haas. Which made me search out some of Ernst's old work. You see I knew Ernst. The fellow who I worked for at the time ... Rudi Niedzeilski, knew Ernst from Germany and since Hasselblad was going to give Ernst an award and it was going to happen in Los Angeles ... Rudi invited Ernst to stay with him. When Ernst came to Los Angeles he asked for help going through his images which would be used for a slide show. You see Hasselblad was going to give Ernst a lifetime achievement award and they wanted to have a slide show of his work at a venue in Los Angeles. 

I had never seen Ernst's images before. I was blown away by his work. Anyone who has seen Ernst work knows what a transitive experience it is. Because Ernst saw color differently than anyone at the time. Ernst made me see color ... and the power that it has. We spent a wonderful week together becoming friends and then ... well, the following year Ernst passed away. That was 1986.

 So after seeing that old image of Ernst's I had to mentally smack myself up the side of the head. For all the good intentions of wanting to only show black & white ... I was doing a disservice to my images that spoke in color.