Seasons in Black-and-White

This post is about the selection process for my submission to Leanne Cole Monochrome Madness weekly journey into the world of Black-and-White, where she invites you to submit your favorite B&W efforts. That link is to this week’s submissions, but next week — Monochrome Madness 4-15 (fourth year, 15th week) — is a themed week and the theme is “Seasons.” 

I often post the contribution on the same day as it appears, but I want to leave plenty of time for anyone so inclined to send Leanne a contribution for next week’s MM. She publishes MM on Thursday but she lives in Australia, so it comes out on Wednesday, here in the US. That means you should send your contribution by Tuesday at the very latest. I suggest sending it no later than Monday as a courtesy to Leanne; it gives her time to compose and edit the post.

Edited to Add: The Monochrome Madness (MM 4-15) is live now. If interested in seeing the other entries, I updated the above link. You can also click HERE.

So! . . . Seasons . . . As usual, it’s left to the contributor to interpret the theme. I was tempted — as I oft am — to be a smart aleck and . . . 

Get it? “seasons” . . . nevermind.

I then decided on the sensible interpretation of the word.  

I have a large number of photos at my disposal . . . but, in Black & White, it’s remarkably difficult (at least, it was for me) getting something signifying the seasons. I mean, Summer and Winter are fairly easy . . . but, Spring and Fall? Those are a different kettle of sardines packed in olive oil and lightly salted. 

Mind you, had I looked at all my photos — about 90,000 not counting phone and P&S photos — I might have found other stuff but — after 1.7 minutes of looking — I only found one shot I liked for Spring . . . 

. . . and two almost identical shots for Fall that I processed differently . . . 

I’m not entirely satisfied with those, but many of the things we think of as identifying with Spring (Robins, buds, nesting birds, wildflowers, naked people dancing on open fields) and Fall (harvests, turning leaves, naked people dancing on open fields) don’t necessarily translate well in B&W. Plus, I couldn’t get the dancing people to sign the release forms.  

The bird shot is nice, and I hope it comes across that it’s a tree in bloom (a Dogwood, I think) but I don’t know. The ground full of leaves certainly is an indication of fall, but it lacks the impact of the color versions. 

Frankly, Summer is also iffy (flowers, bugs, more flowers, more bugs, more naked people frolicking in open fields) but at least I have a number of those shots (again, not the people; sorry.)

For instance, I have lots of bee shots that translate well into B&W . . . 

By the way, you can click on the photos for a larger version (1,000 pixels for the longest dimension, the maximum allowed by Leanne) or you can wait for the gallery at the end of the post. 

Of course, it’s not just bees . . . I also have grasshoppers . . . well, one. I have more, but this is one of the better ones.

How about Ladybugs? 

Or, how about a butterfly?

Heck, I even have butterflies with bees . . . 

Sure, I think those are nice, but do they scream “summer” to you? I don’t know, especially since the last two shots were taken in the middle of October

Let me tell you what clearly conveys a given season . . . snow. Show people snow and they accept that it’s Winter we’re talking about . . . and no, no naked people rolling in the snow. Something about shrinkage, whatever that means. 

I like that shot . . . except, that was taken on the 25th of September of 2009. That’s one of my then co-worker’s cars. I can play with it and give it slightly different looks . . . 

Or try a different treatment highlighting the falling snow; that surely makes it a wintry scene. 

OR, I could go with one of my favorite subjects from where we used to live . . . 

I could even go artsy with it . . . 

But, that’s also the Middle of October; this time, October 2011. 

I could try early November . . . 

. . . or maybe early March . . . 

Wait . . . not dramatic enough; how about this?

But, you know, because it’s in B&W, that could be sand. Or, maybe, sugar. Meringue? 

If I went with those, I’d be lying for most . . . only the last one was taken during Winter. 

But, I do have one that was snapped (by Melisa) during Winter (it was taken on December 22, 2011) and conveys the season in a recognizable way . . . 

Yup . . . anyone should recognize that as Winter. That, by the way, is one of the shots from THIS post. Actually, I recommend visiting THIS SmugMug gallery of that event. That gallery was created when I still annotated galleries (adding a narrative that tracked the blog post). I don’t do that anymore since most people seldom go to the galleries and it’s a lot of work to annotate all the photos. 

Anyway, I like that shot and it’s what I’m going with. I tried a number of different versions; here’s one (you can see the rest in the gallery below) . . . 

. . . and settled on this next version as the best . . . or, the one I liked the best.

Uh-oh . . . we have us a problem . . . the theme is “Seasons” . . . as in “more than one.”

Hmm . . . I could do this . . . 

Yeah, that looks about right . . . I was going to use the Winter photo but the montage looks better. Or so I think. 

Here’s the Gallery:

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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