Shooting Challenge: 38 Black And White Shots

Shooting Challenge: 38 Black And White Shots

There’s something perennially mesmerising about black and white images, but there’s a time and place for its use as a photography technique. In response to this week’s shooting challenge, 38 Giz readers share their stories, camera equipment and techniques for snapping black and white photos. Don’t forget to click on each image to see the full, non-truncated version.

Robert Pettigrew

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Camera: Canon 5d MKII
Lens: EF 24-105mm L (taken at 24mm)
ISO: 100
Shutter: 1/128 Secs
Technique: Luck and fun!
Post effect: Photo X3 to make it black and white

I was excited about entering the competition again but once again i felt lost as to what to take a photo of let alone submit, off i went with my brother in search of the perfect photo. I traveleld about 200Km starting at the south of brisbane to the historic sights of Brisbane city. Then unhappy with the result i headed south to a shopping centre where i saw a dragon (How to train your dragon live advertisement for the live show). Happy with seeing a dragon i took a last ditch attempt to get a photo by heading dead south until the road starting as two lanes, then into one, over bridges and smaller roads till we came to a crossroad. This was the end i felt, one dusty 4wd ridden road to the left and a sealed road to the right with a ‘no though road’ sign. Climbing on top of the sign i though just maybe i wished it could go on, so i covered part of the sign. And that brings me to this photo, me on a sign wishing for the journey to continue.

Reece Crofts

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i was going to close my blinds in my room and i saw the sun going down and thought that it would make a good pic.
shot with: Nikon D3100 VR zoom lens 55-200 at a ISO of 200 with a f-stop 5.6 at a speed of 1/2000

Stuart Addelsee

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Canon EOS 7D – Canon 70-200mm
1/800 sec | f/7.1 | ISO 100

I had quite a few candidates for shots that worked in black in white but decided to keep this pretty simple and went for the minimal silhouette. No real setup, low tide on the weekend so I dragged myself out of bed for a Sunday morning sunrise session. Very little post, some cropping and boost in contrast and blacks.

Stuart –

Brett James

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Taken with a 600D and kit lense.

Trying to write this with a broken keyboard :/ New Bonsai the girlfriend got Me for My birthday!! Bless her 🙂

Steven Lazar

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Hi guys. Long time reader, first time submitter. I’ve driven past this dead tree in a busy medium strip for years, never noticed it before this weekend while thinking of the B&W challenge. Image is a HDR taken with a Canon 5D Mark III. F11 with a 16-35mm wide angle lens. Small amount of Photoshop adjustments to increase contrast.

Simon Lee

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Taken at 7.03am in the freezing cold and rain. Behold “The Three Sisters”.

You can read more about this remarkable rock formation here:

Aperture f4
Shutter 0.5 sec
ISO3200 (Yep!)
Focal length (10-22mm) @13mm

Hayden Shepherd

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Canon 60D [email protected] ISO400 1/800th

Sadly I just missed out on the towel challenge because I was flying overseas. So I thought I’d have a crack at the next challenge. This shot was taken in Akasaka, Tokyo.

Roger Stonehouse

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ISO 100 f7.1 @80mm on a H3D

Taken by Lake Burley Griffin. Some kids were rolling down hills, while others were enjoying a fine lunch.

Jake Bamford

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Taken with a sony alpha a350 f3.5 1/250th iso 100 18mm

This is a photo of my own eye with the light source being an LED torch. I was sitting in front of a mirror with my camera on a tripod hoping that the camera would focus on my iris and pupil and not around my eye. I took the shot in b&w using the camera’s in built function and then enhanced the shadows in photoshop.


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My boyfriend and I went down the coast on the weekend and I took this photo in the afternoon (sunset) from our apartment, 40 levels up!

I used the creative art filter set to black and white and the ISO to 100 with the exposure time set to 1/250 secs.

Thane Russell

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I took this shot at the Melbourne Museum while helping out on my son’s school trip last Friday. I had a few shots from the Museum and Zoo to choose from but liked the angles on this one.

Taken with a Sony a55 and Minolta 50mm f1.7 at 1/1000 sec, f/8 and ISO 400.

James Gray

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Nikon D3000 with 35mm prime lens at f1.8. Post processed with Lightroom using High Contrast B&W preset.
I caught this image of my daughter resting after her first scout hike, focusing on her eyes in the shade of her hat let the rest of the image blow out.

Ryan Zerbe

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1/500 sec
ISO 125

While driving home from work I took a detour through the industrial area of Winnellie in Darwin. The cloud cover in Darwin for the last couple of weeks has been consistently overcast which has left the sky a washed out white in most photos but in this case there was just enough sun to silhouette some of the large power lines nicely.

Tibor Congo

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Canon D1100, 18-55 kitter, midday (sunny), post-processing to remove colour and kicking up the contrast to give it more of a ‘drawn’ look

Georgina Luczi

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Olympus E-PL3, 14.0-42.0 mm, f/3.5-5.6, ISO 200
This is my first B&W shoot with this camera. I was playing around when I saw my partner resting and I couldn’t resist to take a shot.

Shannon Low

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Nikon D7000 – 35mm, f9, 1/20, ISO 100
Finally seeing more sunny days in Sydney. The walk of caving trees in Hyde park is a delight on a good day, and such I got a chance to do. This was my attempt to capture the walk and the spotlights on the ground.

David Parsley

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I had big plans for my first submission, but ended up getting crook most of the weekend. So I have submitted this pic of my front garden rose bushes that I only photographed as proof for my friends because somehow they are the first plants I haven’t killed. I hope you like it.

I took this on my recently purchased D90 with the Nikkor 55-200mm VR kit lense. The post processing has been done in Picasa (B&W, Boost & the border) with only the watermark added in CS5.
ISO 200
92.0mm (138mm equivalent)

Tegan Ackley

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This was taken using my Canon EOS 550D using the macro setting.

I changed the colouring to black and white using iphoto on my mac.

This is my little dog Sookie exploring the back garden.

David E. Williams

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My first Shooting Challenge! Thic pic was shot with a Canon EOS 500D with the 18-55mm kit lens, this is a simple enough pic of a gnarled tree.

What I like about it is the way the image captures the texture of the tree’s surface, as well as the unusual angle.

Simon Hunt

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For the Black & White Challenge I was tempted to put together all sorts of elaborate setups but ended up going with an extremely basic one.

While our pet dog Ziggy (a Whippet) was having a quiet nap I snuck up on him with a macro lens with a ring flash.

Taken with a Canon 5D MKII, 100mm Macro f2.8, ring flash. ISO 3200, f8, 1/640.

Dave Read

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Rig: 450D with a 55-250mm lens shot in manual.
Story: Just a random moment captured while down at the local beach early Saturday morning . A couple – still drunk from the night before – and their dog, came and sat next to me while I was trying to capture some waves breaking in the morning light. “Do you mind if I shoot your dog?” I asked.

Dean Bartolotta

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Dean Bartolotta, 15 y.o, Sydney. Leica M9 w/ F1 Noctilux, ISO 160, 1/2000s shutter speed.

I am currently doing a bit of travel overseas, and whilst in Shanghai we went to an old water village a few hours outside of the city. While taking a Chinese Gondola ride (if thats what there called?) through the village i was lucky enough to not drop the camera and snap this shot! enjoy!

Salvatore Testa

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Title: A dangerous game
Camera: Sony NEX-3
Lens: SEL18-55
ISO640, f4, 1/40th
Post processing: Minor adjustments in iPhoto to darken image and remove a dog hair.

After borrowing a NEX-C3 for the Love photo challenge, I bought my own NEX-3 with the SEL1855 and SEL55210 lenses. I bought all kinds of filters and reverse macro contraptions that I’m looking forward to learning how to use. I didn’t try anything too exciting for this shot; I just wanted to get my head around focus and depth of field. The theme black and white had me thinking of 1920s gangsters, so I started to play around with that idea and settled on a high contrast shot involving a violin case, a knife and some gambling bits and pieces.

Benny Vawdrey

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Canon Eos 550d with 55-250 f/4-5.6 IS II @ ISO 100, 154mm, f/5.6 1/400th.

Australian Superbike Champion Glenn Allerton at Queensland Raceway on Wednesday.

Went down to see a few mates do a track day. I’d done very little sports photography before and thought I’d try a few techniques I’d read about. Was very lucky to see a few of the ASBK guys testing and they put on a hell of a show, including some great looking power wheelies out of turn 6 where I snapped this photo.

The photo was shot in RAW format which helped with post processing in Lightroom. I hadn’t intended this photo to be BW, but it meant I could really over exaggerate the contrast and clarity to well beyond reality and give it a semi sketched feel to it.

David Bird

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The photo was taken at the Canberra Airport Open Day and is of a DC-3 in RAAf colours. The photo was taken using a Canon EOS 1000D with the basic 18-55mm zoom lens, some post processing was done in HDRtist Pro and Aperture.

Gil Wright

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Taken on the Cahill Expressway using Hipstamatic (Random Selection). I just liked the combination of old grain and the reflection from the front of the car.

David Duncan

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Camera: Panasonic DMC-TZ15
Lens: Leica (Standard)

I’m a novice so I generally go with the iAuto settings. This is a photo of Thor, the 18 day old beagle pup. Opened his eyes only 3 days ago and this is his first venture outdoors. My son, in the background of the photo, won the pool we had going for the number and gender of the puppies so he got naming rights to the first born which was “Thor”. I have been experimenting with positioning of the camera and have found the ground level shots deliver the best results of the pups. Getting them to keep still is a real challenge so the key is to take many photos! These are our first puppies so in the first 18 days we have around 2000 photos. I took around 200 over the weekend. It was so hard to choose the one to submit but eventually settled on this one.

Tara Clapperton

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Puppy camouflage

Shot on Canon s95
B&W setting
-1 exp
no flash
ISO auto

Some tweaking of highlight & shadow in picasa.

With our very small dog being grey & white and a grey & white rug, we have to be really mindful of where we walk. No flash so I could get up close.

Nicholas Tuck

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I took this shot near the end of last week at an old abandoned building in Sydney near the airport, the entire inside is deserted and boarded up, I took this shot late in the afternoon just before sunset, had to climb a fence to get close enough, no post processing aside from the conversion to B/W and a small crop. It’s nice to see the post apocalyptic world isn’t too far away from anywhere !

Standard Tripod using an android tablet tethered with the Helicon remote software for live view.
ISO 100
f/ 2.8
1/6 s
Nikon D7000
24-70 Nikkor Lens @24

Julian Ryan

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My wife and I were watching Black Swan, and she said it was bullshit, I said it was showgirls for the art crowd, she called me a wanker, and went outside for a fag. Just luck, and a beautiful and wise woman.

55mm at 2.8 for 1/2

Robert Go

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“In nomine …”

Hasselblad 500C/M
Fomapan 100 film
Developed with Adonal, 1+99, 1hr stand
Scanned with Canoscan 9000F

Pete Turner

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The game’s afoot.

Camera: Canon EOS 7d
Lens: Canon 10-22mm

Peter Baldwin

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I took this shot of a waterfront Italian restaurant in Rozelle while wandering around with my camera. I took this on my iPhone, using TopCamera in HDR mode so I could get some shadow detail. I used Retouch HD on my iPad to remove a bit of graffiti on the wall, then into Noir for the black and white. I always use Noir if I’m converting to B&W because it can give some interesting effects. Oh, and most of the shadow detail is gone after Noir.


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I was looking for a shot for this weeks challenge, knowing It would have to be good and after a couple of different efforts this one’s it …..
I was trying to get the side of a contrast blending shot, then the idea came from all these eggcups round the kitchen and with an assistant to block the light from the egg cups but not the sequins managed this one .
Camera :Canon 600D
Lens(kit) 18-55mm
Tv:about 1/60 ISO:1600
Av: 4.5 Length: 24mm

Nic Bills

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First time shooting with a SLR camera as opposed to the DSLR’s my generation is used to.

Our brief for the photo-shoot was ‘people’ and I saw this man waiting to cross the road outside Flinders Street Station (Melbourne) and thought it was a good opportunity to use one of my shots (only 24 on a film!) on him.

Taken with a Nikon TM2, Iso 125 with 125 shutter speed & F5.3

The fun was not just in taking the photo with what my generation would describe as an “Old School” camera but also the opportunity to actually go through the whole cycle of loading the film into the camera at the start of the shoot to going back into the dark room to blow up our own photographs and watch the photography come up (as if by magic) as it enters the developer solution.

A very unique experience that many of my generation will never take part in.

Nic Bills – 15 – Melbourne

Ash Richards

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This was taking with my Dell Streak 5 (probably one of the few people still using one from launch in oz)

Is looking down Whitehorse Road in Boxhill at dusk and saw the sun burst through the clouds.

Post production in app “Pixlr-o-matic” with ‘Lucas’ filter to make black and white.

Ben Hughes

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I took this photo of my old clothesline with the idea of using the image for a music project I’m working on. I applied the B&W effect via Camera+ for the iPhone (4S) .

I’m very happy with the way it turned out.


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Black & White.

Symmetrically Reflected.
Taken with a Leica D-Lux 4.
Manual Program
Aperture: f8.0
Shutter Speed: 1/200
ISO: 100
Focal Length: 5.1mm