II am old enough (!) to remember when all photographs were black and white. Indeed until I was in my 20s I mostly took black and white photographs, processing them myself wherever I could create a darkroom, blacking out the windows of the kitchen or bathroom with bin bags and old curtains.
Back in those days colour was expensive. Slides involved the cost of a projector or peering at the slides through a small battery powered viewer – exciting when you could afford to do it. And there was the anticipation of waiting for the pictures to pop through the letterbox in the yellow bag from Kodak.
The quality of colour prints was initially not very good and I avoided them – until the family arrived. No time for black and white processing then and colour print film had improved. My first photograph album of baby Donald, our oldest son was all black and white. Then as the years went by I was won over to colour prints.
Then came digital photography – but that’s another story. My initial resistance was followed by a total conversion like most of the photo taking world. You don’t even need a camera now, many phones will do it for you.
Photography has come a long way from its B&W roots. What a joy it has been to rediscover B&W this month. The current project set for the Camera School Course I am following is to take a black and white picture, “filling the frame with an interesting natural or man-made pattern or texture”.
I have not yet decided which picture to submit, but below you can see my short list.
Harvest Tracks 1
The harvest is in full swing in the lovely sunny weather in Cruden Country. I noticed these tracks in a field on the road to Clola.
Harvest Tracks 2
Not all the barley makes it into the trailer. These stalks of barley had been pressed down by the tractor wheels in the harvest field.
Squaring the Circle
I have grown to like the circular straw bales in the harvest fields. Perhaps not quite as picturesque as the stooks of my youth, but they can make a pleasing pattern in the yellow fields. and when you look closely at them……
Or you might look over the bale? Looking towards Auchlethen from a field beside the Hatton Straight.
I have taken several pictures of stones on the beach. This was a collection of “fascinating” stones gathered by my granddaughter, Eira on New Aberdour beach, and helpfully soaked with buckets of sea water by her brother, Theo (I am the strongest man in the world!) The wet stones in the sunlight have a pleasing texture.
A project like this makes you look at detail you just take for granted. There are some lovely rock patterns on Whinnyfold beach if you start to look for them.
I love to take the dog for a wee walk through the North Woods at Mintlaw. t’s not a long walk, but the trees are lovely at any time of year. I love this mysterious twisted beech tree.
Blowing in the wind
There is something very attractive about Pampas Grass blowing in the wind. But I have discovered they are not so easy to photograph because of the wind. The fronds move about quite a bit and it is like taking a picture of a moving animal – difficult to get just the right picture in the frame. You also need to make sure that the camera is set at a high enough shutter speed to avoid blur. I took a couple of dozen shots of this pampas grass in Park View in Hatton and have chosen this one as the best.
The Road Home
I like this picture, but it does not really fit my brief. It’s the road back to Hatton, just at the cross road at Newton Farm , near Lenabo. The light was wonderful, the clouds just right. it is a shame that the Council has not filled in the crack in the tar! But I suppose you can’t have everything.