SHOOTING black and white with armin walcher

It doesn’t matter if its sport, landscape or documentary. It has to be on point and the true magic of black and white. Focus on the essentials. Every frame has room for interpretation, but really good ones need no interpretation or let’s better say explanation.

1. Think black and white

Go out and think in black and white, don’t go out and just shoot. Black and white has no room for distraction using color.

2. Think about the frame. 

Many people have the approach to check the files afterwards and if it doesn’t work in color they think, ok let’s try it in black and white.                                                                                No, if you shoot in color think in color, if you shoot in black and white think black and white and most importantly, imagine and see in black in white. Even if you have a normal DSLR, try to go out and set a goal, today I want to shoot only black and white.

I bought a Leica M-Monochrom, like in the old days just the digital way. I go out and only shoot black and white with the camera, there is no other option. But like I said before, it doesn’t matter if you have a normal DSLR or any kind of camera, just think monochrom.

Even if you want to shoot a series of a topic, think if you want to go for color or black and white, don’t decide afterwards.

3. using fixed lenses

Another thing that I do, I only use a 50mm or a 28mm, so only fixed lenses, no zoom lenses if I work on personal projects.

Why? I only want to have a 50mm, my „normal eye view“ standard lens with me. Things I see in real I want to shoot in black and white without zooming in and out trying what looks best.

Focus on just one thing, seeing the world in black and white.

4. Less is more

Think on point, show us what you want to express in the photograph without a written explanation.

Sure, every photograph needs a caption. But before, the most important part is that you want to catch the eye of the viewer so that they get interested in reading the caption.

essential tips

  • Go out, see and think monochrom.
  • Find the decisive moment.
  • Take expressive photographs on point.
  • Try to express your emotions in a photograph using black and white as your art tool.
  • Criticism leads to improvement, but always keep your own way of thinking.
  • Don’t try to copy, create your own way of expression.
  • And the most important part, have fun and enjoy shooting black and white.






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