Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world.
I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist. Through my blog I am
seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Monday, 14 June 2021

Monochrome photography - give it a go!

 Hi everyone, I hope you are all doing well. It is freezing here today. A good day to be inside in front of the fire. Or even playing around with your photography. 

Yes on a wet cold day you can still do photography. What about taking a photo of that bowl of soup you have just made for dinner? Or just lay out some kitchen utensils. Experiment with something new. 

Have you tried monochrome photography - black and white OR tones of one colour? (ie you could change an image to tones of green) 

A couple of weeks ago our photography group had a zoom workshop with an eminent mono photographer. I was blown away by his images and learnt a lot. Len's work is so inspiring. 

Thank you Len Metcalf  

Len says he leaves his camera in black and white mode while he takes his photos, whereas "I thought" the "usual" school of thought was to take your photos in colour, then convert potentials to black and white later in post processing. Of course before the advent of digital photography we had to choose whether to use a colour roll or black and white.

I won't pretend to be anywhere near the level of Len or any of the other great black and white photographers, but here are a few pics maybe to get you thinking about monochrome - which is very much, I think, about shapes, texture, form, contrast, shades and light. Monochrome takes away the distractions of colour and allows us to hone in on the subject matter. 

Not all subjects photograph well in black and white. So experiment! 

Here are some tips from Digital Photography School: Beginners guide to black & white photography

Lets start in the kitchen. They usually don't recommend mono for food, as the colour in food photography is compensating for the viewer for the lack of taste and smell, but I think these few work... In case you are wondering, top left is liquorice allsorts minus the colour! 

In the garden or out walking. That is a seed head top left, and close up of a banksia flower bottom left. Don't forget you can also take photos against (facing toward) the light as in bottom right. 

or these....  Incidentally the top left photo is processed with tones of one colour

Architecture is a great subject for mono photography. Take a walk in any town or city and you will find shapes, angles, patterns everywhere. Look for shadows and look up and down. Reflections in windows are great subjects too. 

If you have Lightroom you can change to TONES of your image to tones of ONE COLOUR. Make a copy of your image, and then in the DEVELOP tab, change your image to black and white, then look for the split toning tab on the right hand side of the develop screen, and move the sliders so the HUE and the SATURATION are the same number. You can see below I have changed this image of the window reflection to blue - and therefore monochrome. 

I had a thing about photographing balconies and washing when we were walking in Spain and Italy a couple of years ago. Recently I read that when sky can be blown out because you are trying to compensate for the shadow in the narrow street - converting to black and white can make this less noticeable. I think it works in this photo. 

Black and white portraits are classic and timeless 

And a few more. Even fireworks - bottom right below

Monochrome - tones of one colour

Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed this little look at mono photography. Do you enjoy mono photography?

To find out more: there are of course many many more......

I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!
MosaicMonday at Letting Go of the Bay Leaf
Sharon's Sovenirs 

Our World Tuesday
Pictorial Tuesday 
ThroughMy Lens 
My corner of the world through my camera 
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global hosted by Randomosity. 
       and Little bird - Pienilintu
Thankful Thursday 
The Lovin' Life Team over at: Deep Fried Fruit
 Month end link up @ Live love craft me

Hello there! I love reading your comments. If you scroll down to the bottom you can comment too! I would love to hear from you.


  1. I've never tried this with my camera but I may go try some in photoscape. I love the buildings and of course the train! WOW! That last photo is amazing! The smoke really adds to it! Beautifully done for Mosaic Monday!

    1. thank you so much for your comments. Especially for the train. I've entered it in this months photography group comp - so wish me luck! 'Hope you have a go with mono photography. have fund.

  2. These are lovely! I rarely think to use monochrome in my photography and find it to be quite challenging but I do try to push myself out of my comfort zone now and then and give it a go.

  3. Interesting. In college I learned to develop B&W film and print photos (1970-1974). It was interesting and fun.

  4. I haven't done as much mono as I should. I see from your photos and others that it can really bring out the forms and shape of things.

  5. Yesterday I posted on my insta stories in B & W it was really effective, even for a child's 1 yr old party which had so much colour your post and tutorial has inspired me for me. Colour can sometimes be a distraction, beautiful as it is! The washing is a great example as is the steam and the train!

  6. Jill - taking photos in black and white never enters my mind. You are always inspiring and pushing the envelope! I will give it a try! Thanks for sharing yet another "tutorial" with everyone at Mosaic Monday!

  7. I have never tried mono photography but you have given me some ideas. That last photo is amazing.

  8. I agree, monochrome is classic and timeless and so evocative. Perhaps it's because the brain tries to imagine the colour, or perhaps it actually makes the brain more peaceful! Anyway, I love it, but I'm not brave enough to try. Well done you! And thanks for all the wonderful tips :)

  9. Monochrome photography is fun! Really brings out the subject and takes away the destractions!

  10. I love photography - monochrome or colored - but there's something mystical about black and white isn't it?

    Worth a Thousand Words

  11. Oh you have some WONDERFUL shots here! I love these images.
    Thanks so much for sharing at https://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2021/06/a-visit-to-garden.html. You've definitely piqued my interest!

  12. I like converting to B&W but not all photos are good for it. Great images.

    Thanks for choosing to share your link this week at 'My Corner of the World'!


I hope you have enjoyed your visit to my blog. Thank you for stopping by and for taking the time to comment. I read and very much appreciate every comment and love hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return.