Returning Home?

Broken Cottonwood, Jackson, WY, Canon 5DSR
Broken Cottonwood, Jackson, WY,  Old and New, Death and Life, and the Passage of Time

 

I am a big fan of Eric Clapton, especially of his later years where he returned to his blues roots.  I recall his “From the Cradle” CD where he really went back to the blues in a strong way.  Not

Pickets
Pickets

sure why I am attracted to the blues but always have been as long as I can remember.  What has this got to do with this post?  Well, many years ago as I got started in photography I, like many others, experimented with black and white.  Over the years I progressed through several camera formats, including 4×5 large format, with a basement darkroom.  I would study the works of Ansel Adams and John Sexton and others.  Studying Ansel’s zone system and using a modified Pentax spot meter is how I really learned exposure.  This is one reason, even today, my primary camera mode is “manual” with spot metering.

String Lake, Grand Tetons National Park, WY
String Lake, Grand Tetons National Park, WY

 

While over time I came to shoot both color and black and white, I eventually began to shoot only color.  Lately however, I find myself struggling with a desire to return to my earlier days of the monochrome capture.  Every time I see a well done monochrome image I become increasing conflicted internally on a path forward personally.  Why not just do both you ask?  Good question.  I really love it when I capture a beautiful color image with magical light.  But the images don’t seem to have the same lasting power.  A well done black and white print is not only beautiful but seems timeless.  I also find that, for me anyway, I have to place myself in a monochrome mindset.  It is a whole different way of seeing.  Hard to do both.

Anyway, I made a promise to myself that the coming year I would refocus, return to my roots so to speak, and shoot monochrome for any personal work.  While I will of course shoot some color in support of several workshops I conduct, personal work will be monochrome.  It will be interesting to see my work by year’s end.

Beech Tree
Beech Tree

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