Will 2023 and 2024 be the year Black and White really makes a comeback?
Over the last year or so I've had consultations with around 40 couples regarding their wedding photography. I've noticed that many more than in the past have said, "Can we have quite a lot of black and white photos please"
Now I've always given couples a few black and white wedding photos - they just seem to call out to me while I'm edited their wedidng photos and say "I need to be black and white"
But it now seems like black and white will become a trend for 2024 and 24.
WHY Black and White?
For me as a wedding photographer it's all about emotion and moments. Whilst I do spend a few minutes with every couple getting some "staged" as opposed to "posed" couple shots the majority of the photos I take at a wedding are all about a "moment" or emotions. And to be honest these do tend to be better as black and white - the colour seems to be a distraction from the essence of the image. A famous photographer once said that colour photos are about peoples clothes - black and white is about the people.
Wedding Photos in Black and White Are Timeless
I look back at my parents wedding photos which of course were black and white prints - they look timeless. They really could have been taken last week (apart maybe from my Mums' hairdo!) I do suspect that colour photos will not age as well as black and white
Black and White Wedding Photos are more "in focus"
Somehow a black and white image is far easier to get the viewer to focus on the right part of the photo - which of course is usually the bride, groom or guests. Often in colour photos the background may have something distracting like a fire exit sign (remember these photos are taken in public buildings not a studio!) which really stands out in a colour photo; the same image in black and white has this sign almost invisible as it fades into the background as it should.
Black and White Photos Look Wonderful When Printed.
We're all so used to seeing images via our phones or screens. It's a fact that a printed photo has about twice the resolution of an image on a screen (possibly more) This gives prints a huge amount more depth and detail than any screen; even a 40" 4k TV screen doesn't give such amazing detail as a printed photo. I know from experience that a black and white photo benefits even more than a colour photo from being printed - and when framed it truly can become a piece of art to hang on a wall.
Allen Blasdell is a full time professional wedding photographer based in Suffolk and covering all of East Anglia for elegant, top quality weddings.