We’ve lots of articles on this site covering black and white digital photography and other monochrome issues. There are also many Black and White Photos in the Gallery
If you are just starting out with digital black and white, then this particular article may be of interest:
This page is a reference point for all our digital black and white photography related articles and reviews.
It covers all aspects from taking photos for b&w use, processing and editing them (converting colour to b&w) and producing black and white prints.
Articles listed here are those with significant sections dealing with aspects of black and white photography.
Why Black and White
There is a resurgence in interest in black and white photography.
I’m reminded of this quote from someone who’s original work, and ability to explore new techniques I admire:
“I eagerly await new concepts and processes. I believe that the electronic image will be the next major advance. Such systems will have their own inherent and inescapable structural characteristics, and the artist and functional practitioner will again strive to comprehend and control them.”
– Ansel Adams
forward to his book “the Negative”, published January, 1980
Black and White Photography
The image to the right is a special black and white printer test image.
Keith Cooper has created it to test the quality of black and white printing.
This is the latest (2014) version of our standard black and white printer test image, first published in 2005
The new test image incorprates a number of features designed to make it more useful in testing and then improving monochrome print output.
Many features are also directly copied from the old version so as to maintain compatibility with exisiting test prints.
It’s quite a harsh test, but covers most areas where printers have difficulties, such as shadow detail, colour casts, and linearity. All the various parts are explained and an A4 300ppi sized version is freely available for download. There are versions with a 51 and 21 step greyscale ramp available for creating QTR ‘correction’ profiles.
Black and White photography articles on this site
The articles and reviews are grouped into different categories. You can look through all the articles via the categories selection at there right, or use the search box.
- Keith Cooper’s City Light Luminar presets Keith's 'City Light' presets for MacPhun's Luminar photo editing software. Developed for architectural images when converting from colour to B&W. Before and after examples, and how they differ from 'straight' B&W conversions. Also using them as a luminance adjustment for colour images.
- Moving back to film photography Returning to film? Rediscovering old film equipment offers a simpler more direct world of photography. Is it time for Keith to buy some camera batteries and rolls of film?
- The art of the big photographic landscape print What makes for a great looking large 'fine art' print? What differences do you need to consider when deciding to make larger prints (A2 and above). Larger prints are that work are far more than just more megapixels, sharper lenses and big printers.
- X-Rite i1iO and a B&W test image The X-Rite i1iO table and i1Pro2 spectrophotometer are used with a modified version of Keith's black and white test print (8 & 16 bit versions downloadable). Quick and easy check for monochrome print linearity includes chart averaging.
- Keith Cooper’s City Light Tonality Presets Keith's 'City Light' presets for the MacPhun Tonality Pro plugin. Developed for architectural images when converting from colour to B&W. Before and after examples, and how they differ from 'straight' B&W conversions. Also using them as a luminance adjustment for colour images.
- Printer Test Images Collection of printer test images - colour and monochrome (black and white). Test photos for printer and monitor checking.
- Multiple Scans of Black and White film compared After reviewing the Epson Perfection V850 film scanner, Keith Cooper looks at the same piece of film scanned in several different scanners, including drum scanning
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- Canon imagePROGRAF TX-3000 review Testing the Canon TX-3000 36" width printer. Keith Cooper reviews the Canon TX wide format printer and plotter for photo and graphics printing. Also covers the 24" TX-2000 printer and 44" TX-4000
- Fotospeed Matt art papers review Fotospeed Platinum Cotton 305 and Cotton Etching 305 matt art papers review. Cotton acid free fine art paper. Natural white smooth and Etching finish bright white
- Review of the Epson P5000 printer Review of the Epson Surecolor P5000 printer. 17 inch width A2, with roll support and paper cartridge for sheet media. Looking at print capabilities and colour management
- Epson SC-P20000 printer review Review of the Epson SC-P20000 printer by Keith Cooper. 64 inch width large format printer with new UltraChrome Pro 10-colour ink-set including high density Mk/Pk inks and three grey inks for better Black & White printing
- Paper review Platinum Gloss Art Fibre 300 Paper review, looking at Platinum Gloss Art Fibre 300gsm paper by Fotospeed. Tested on the Canon PRO-2000 pigment ink printer for colour and black and white printing
- Impressora pro photo media review Review of six different papers from the Impressora range of photo media, from Canvas to cotton rag paper to glossy metallic finish. All tested on the Canon PRO-2000 printer
- Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-2000 printer review Detailed review of the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-2000 24" pigment ink printer. 11 inks and a gloss optimiser coat. Dual roll feed option. Roll and sheet media tested, including a print over 7m long.
- Canon iPF6400 – 6450 printer review Detailed review of the imagePROGRAF iPF6450 (ipF6400) 24 inch large format printer. Colour management and print setup for colour and black and white
- Epson Stylus Photo R2000 review Epson Stylus Photo R2000 full review, using the SP R2000 A3+ printer for colour and black and white printing, with custom ICC profiles. 13 inch print width and roll media support
- Canon Pixma PRO-10 printer review Detailed Canon Pixma PRO-10 printer review, looking at colour and black and white pigment ink based printing a range of paper types up to A3 plus size (13" width)
- Making a black and white photograph The whole process of making a large black and white photograph, right from stopping to take the photo, through to final fine-art printmaking.
- Printer review – Canon Pixma Pro-1 Detailed review of the Canon Pixma Pro-1, a 12 ink A3+ (13inch) printer for colour and black and white printing. Tested on a range of paper types and sizes.
- Producing better photographs Why you probably don't need to rush out and spend money to improve your photography - it about thinking more, and taking more photos. New cameras and lenses are nice but not as essential as you might think
- Black and white print linearisation with the i1Pro 2 Using the X-Rite i1Pro 2 spectrophotometer to measure black and white test print targets to create linearising curves and profile with the QTR software package
- Keith Cooper’s talks about printmaking Keith Cooper talks about making large prints at The Photography Show 2017 - Getting great looking big prints from your work. From camera to print, the complete workflow
- New Canon papers announced Canon USA announce three new Premium Fine Art papers — Premium Fine Art Smooth, Premium Fine Art Bright White and Premium Polished Rag. Designed to produce, rich-color reproduction, and detailed expression of gradation. Keith has a roll of the Fine Art Smooth for an upcoming paper review
Useful B&W resources
Useful Black and White related resources
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More print related information
For information about other printers, paper reviews and profiling (colour management) see the Printing section of the main Articles and Reviews page, or use the search box at the top of any page. There are also specific index pages for any articles connected with the following topics:
- Digital Black and White
- Tutorials and 'How to' articles
- Colour Management
- Printer test images
- Why do your prints look wrong?
More of Keith's articles/reviews (Google's picks to match this page)
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