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Where did real colour go?

(Model Jessica, Nikon F80, Nikon AF-S 50 mm, 1.4 G., Ilford HP5. )

How come that black & white photography is more often associated with fine art then colour photography? Is it that we’re less distracted by flaws and get more focussed on composition?  Does it give more clarity to the subject and story which is told? Or is it because we simply lost colour during the process of commercialization and taking digital colour for granted? According to the famous photographer Robert Frank “Black and white are the colors of photography. To me they symbolize the alternatives of hope and despair”.

There are several famous photographers whom made the switch from black & white to colour when color slide film got on the market. For instant William Eggleston who made pictures of common places and things in these brilliant vibrant colours. Colours that we nowadays try to reproduce with software tools like Lightroom and Photoshop, but we must admit we hardly succeed in doing that. Where did we go wrong? Where did we drop the ball?

© William Eggleston

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