Sunday, November 7, 2010

Local Matsuri Revisited: Color or Black & White?

Recently there was a autumn festival for a local shrine near my house, Ubusuna Jinja (産土神社). As a part of the celebration the shrine's danjiri cart was paraded through the neighborhood. There are many local danjiri festivals in Japan, the most famous taking place in Kishiwada, Osaka. I was able to follow the cart in my neighborhood for a while and take some photos.

You can see 26 of my photos in two sets within this blog: In Living Color or in Classic Black & White.  

The former displays some magnificent colors while the latter shows off rich textures. 

Which do you prefer? Do certain shots work better in color than in black & white,  or vice versa? Which ones and why? Does each set evoke a different mood or feeling? Which would you want to see in a photo exhibition? How do you feel about mixing color and black & white in the same exhibition? 

Feedback and comments are greatly appreciated.

Click here to see In Living Color thumbnails.

Click here to see Classic Black & White thumbnails.

For further information about the Ubusuna Jinja (in Japanese):

門真市岸和田 産土神社: http://www.xhotzone.net/vh/vh08111902.php

上島町 島頭天満宮: http://www.twin.ne.jp/~ebata/htm/simagasira.html

5 comments:

John Powers said...

The children in the cart in Black and White is stunning. There wasn't a color photo that stood out so much to say I greatly preferred color over B&W as I do with the children in the cart. But I do somewhat prefer photo22 in color, and that slight preference extends to most of the photos.

Tim said...

I like the colored ones better, simply because they are the original. Also, the colored ones seemed to be conveying so much more. I felt more engaged in those than the classic B&W ones. Perhaps if the shots were taken originally in B&W, not edited, it might have better..?

Anonymous said...

converting the photos is not the same as shooting originally in black and white. it also depends on the program which converts them to black and white which can make them look better or worse. a good program such as CS5 will have the best results if changed correctly. some of the shots turned out better in color than black and white.

visual gonthros said...

I wonder what you mean by "originally taken in black and white." This is digital photography - it is a matter of flicking a switch. Which is exactly what I have done. No mystery "conversion." In the past one needed two cameras and multiple shots to get both color and black&white. But that's not the case now, right? I can flick the switch in my camera or in my computer software. Is there really so much a difference? "Changed correctly?" Please explain. Which shots turned out better in color (and why?)? That is what I asked...

Anonymous said...

The camera will do more in terms of brightness and contrast when taking the shot originally in black and white vs. a computer program because the camera possibly choose the right ISO, exposure,etc depending on the setting by photographer and his/her preference of choice when shooting. If the photographer originally chooses black and white/and or color, even when switching switch on the camera, then the viewer will be impressed because the photo is unaltered for the photo. It is true that we are finally saved time due technology and flicking a switch; however, choosing color or black and white ultimately depends on photographer, situation(possibly light, dark, fast motion, still etc.), and setting.

For example, picture 18, all the people are wearing different color coats; however, in black and white, it does not stand out, but in color it is amazing photo.

Next example, picture 10, looks much better in black and white because there is not much color or anything, so it stands out much better in black and white then color photo, but if this photo was taken that day in black and white, would there be a be huge difference vs. a computer altered picture later? I am unsure. But if it was the photographer's intention for the first shot in color or black and white, then we, the viewer, would have no clue whether photo was altered or not and accept the photo for as is.