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.
- Black and white linearisation with the i1Pro 3 Updated linearisation for black and white printing with the X-Rite i1Pro3 spectrophotometer. Using the free chart measurement features of i1Profiler. Includes files and data for incorporating test strips into printer test images
- Printer Test Images Collection of printer test images - colour and monochrome (black and white). Test photos for printer and monitor checking.
- A simple black and white print A simple black and white print workflow aimed at showing just how easy it is to create a black and white landscape print, with a few simple edits.
- Keith Cooper’s paper reviews Keith's photo paper reviews - collected data from all the papers for printing photos that we've tested over the years. Helpful if you can't get them where you live. Matt, satin, lustre and glossy
- Printing low megapixel images at large size Printing low megapixel images at large size, looking at resizing and image editing techniques that let you make larger prints than you thought possible. Getting good prints at A2 and 17" x 25" sizes
- Better photography by printing your work Better Photography from prints. Printing your photos is a useful skill to work on. 5 steps towards getting great prints that will help you improve all of your photography
- 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.
There are around a thousand free articles and reviews on the site - thanks to everyone who helps support it.
We appreciate any purchases you make through our partners such as B&H which help us sustain the site.
There are around a thousand free articles and reviews on the site - thanks to everyone who helps support it. We appreciate any purchases you make through our partners such as B&H which help us sustain the site.
- X-Rite i1Photo Pro 3 plus review Review of the X-Rite i1Photo Pro 3 Plus monitor, scanner and printer profiling package using the i1Pro 3 Plus spectrophotometer. Backlit printed materials can now be profiled, and the spectrophotometer has an M3 option for polarised measurements
- Panoramic printing review using Fotospeed paper Wide prints and panoramic photo composition. Review of Fotospeed panoramic paper (210mm x 594mm) for wide prints colour and black and white. Some thoughts about making wide prints work.
- SpyderX Studio review Review of the Spyder X Studio kit from Datacolor. Includes the Spyder X Elite monitor calibrator, SpyderCube white balance and exposure tool and SpyderPrint printer profiling kit for creating ICC printer profiles
- DxO Nik Collection 2- review info. Nik Collection 2 image editing plugins - Updated Nik plugin collection from DxO with improved compatibility for modern apps. Links to Keith's detailed reviews and discussion of new functionality
- Fotospeed Fotospeed Smooth Cotton 300 paper review Fotospeed Smooth cotton 300 paper review. Smooth matte surface surface, Cotton based 300gsm white paper. Takes a good ink load and for a matte paper gives solid colour and B&W tonality
- Fotospeed Legacy Gloss 325 paper review Fotospeed Legacy Gloss 325 paper review. Smooth unglazed gloss surface, Cotton based 325gsm natural warm white paper. OBA free. Making large exhibition quality prints.
- Fotospeed Platinum Baryta 300 paper review Fotospeed Platinum Baryta 300 paper review. Smooth unglazed gloss surface 300gsm natural white paper. Making large exhibition quality prints
- Canon PRO-1000 printer review Detailed review of the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 17" pigment ink printer. 11 inks and a colour optimiser coat. Tested for colour and B&W printing on a range of media types. Paper sixes up to A2, with borderless print options.
- Epson SureColor P7000 printer review Detailed review of the Epson SureColor SC-P7000 24" width large format printer. Using the P7000 for fine art and photo printing with the LLk ink option. Review applies to the larger 44" SC-P9000 as well.
- Canon iPF8300 review and notes Ongoing Canon iPF8300 review and notes about using the imagePROGRAF iPF8300 44 inch large format printer, by Keith Cooper. Notes date back to setting up the printer in November 2010
- Epson SureColor SC-P800 printer review Detailed review of the Epson SureColor P800 printer. A2 sheet paper (17" width) and roll paper support. Tested with a variety of paper types, colour and B&W
- Epson SureColor P600 printer review Detailed Epson SureColor P600 review. The SC-P600 is an A3 plus (13" width) pigment ink printer tested with different papers for colour and black & white. It supports borderless printing, roll paper and CD/DVD printing
- Print setup for a new fine art paper Setup and profiling an unknown new paper for colour and Black & White printing. Looking at the whole process including media settings and types, and creating icc printer profiles.
- Canon Pixma PRO-100 printer review Detailed review of the Canon Pixma PRO-100 printer. A 13" width (A3+ paper size) dye ink based printer for colour and black and white.
- Epson SureColor SC-P5000 STD Printer announced Latest information about the new SureColor P5000 17" large format printer from Epson. The replacement for the SP4900 A2 sized desktop printer.
- 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)