Toying with black and white

This image is of a train approaching a railway station at night. It was an experiment and you could be forgiven for thinking it was an experiment in long-exposure photography although that’s only part of the story

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A train rounds the corner and comes down the line. This wasn’t so much an experiment in long-exposure photography, but how it would work in black and white.

I’ve done a lot of long-exposure photography recently (see here or here for instance). What I was trying to do on this occasion was combine black and white photography with a long-exposure of less than 10 seconds.

It took a lot of practice. Loads and loads of images were rejected before I took this one. Previous long-exposure images I’ve taken have had lots of objects to focus on or have had a fixed focal point. I’ve discovered that trying to get a camera to focus on one moving object for a long exposure shot is incredibly difficult!

As I usually do with my photography blog posts, I’ve linked this one to the #MySundayPhoto blog linky hosted by Photalife.com. I encourage you to click on the badge below to visit the blog and explore imagery taken by other bloggers.

 

Photalife

 

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26 Comments

  1. December 3, 2017 / 6:58 am

    Hi John, at first that went over my head! Not the train, of course (sorry couldn’t resist!). Thank goodness for digital cameras, at least we can practice to our heart’s content without running up costs. I can imagine that long exposure whilst trying to focus on a moving point is difficult, but I like your photo. It’s quite ghostly.

    xx

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:52 pm

      Oh gosh did it take along time to get that image. A very long time. Yes, I am thankful for the arrival of the digital camera!

  2. December 3, 2017 / 7:44 am

    Glad you got an image that worked in the end! It’s certainly very striking.

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:51 pm

      Just don’t ask how long it took Sarah to get the image, please don’t ask how long it took!

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:51 pm

      Thanks Natalie, that’s very kind of you to say so.

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:50 pm

      I certainly did….and wasn’t wrapped up nearly enough. It was absolutely freezing.

  3. December 3, 2017 / 10:17 am

    I love the effect, I am wondering what it would look like with just a flash of red light

    Thank you for linking up

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:50 pm

      Yeah, getting the train from behind and using selective colour? That could be worth trying.

  4. December 3, 2017 / 5:04 pm

    Wow this is amazing, very atmospheric. I wouldn’t even know where to begin #mysundayphoto

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:49 pm

      Well, you could start by going and spending several nights stood on a freezing cold bridge. Alternatively…..just look at my photo and stay warm!

  5. December 3, 2017 / 6:50 pm

    I love the idea of combining long exposure with black and white. The result is great! Got me thinking now… #MySundayPhoto

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:49 pm

      Wonderful to hear I’ve inspired you. the colour version is on my Instagram feed if you want to take a look.

  6. December 3, 2017 / 7:10 pm

    Really interesting shot John. I keep saying I must go to a motorway bridge near us to take some photos, but never get round to it.

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:48 pm

      Well, let’s be honest, hanging out on a motorway bridge isn’t everybody’s idea of fun!

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:48 pm

      it does doesn’t it? the curve of the track adds something to the image I feel.

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:47 pm

      Didn’t feel it at the time. I was absolutely freezing!

  7. December 4, 2017 / 5:07 pm

    I love the light trail, takes a whole different perspective X #mysundayphoto

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 5, 2017 / 9:47 pm

      Sort of looks white hot doesn’t it?

  8. December 9, 2017 / 9:30 am

    I love the way the black and white really makes the light trail of the train stand out. The contrast works really well in this shot. Love your long-exposure shots 🙂

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 10, 2017 / 7:13 am

      Thanks Louise, Ilike the effect on the main headlight on the front of the train. That really stands out for me.

  9. December 9, 2017 / 8:16 pm

    I’m liking the black and white feature. I think the lack of colour really makes the difference with how dramtic the photo is! I’ve not experimented with long exposure so it’s fascinating watching you go through it. As always, fab shot. Loved it! Looking forward to seeing tomorrow’s! #mysundayphoto

    • John Adams
      Author
      December 10, 2017 / 7:13 am

      Thanka Martyn, glad you liked the shot. Took a lot of practice. Alas, I may not be participating this week. Just not happy with any imagery I have taken over the past few days.