B&W Magic: Our 6 Favorite Reader Photos from the Power of Black & White Assignment

The Grand Tetons from the Snake River
Cecil Thomas captured this image while rafting down the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park. It was shot with a Nikon D700 and a Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 lens at 1/1600 second, f/16, ISO 2500. © Cecil Thomas

Despite all the advancements in imaging—including the advent of color and the now dominance of digital—there’s something about classic black-and-white photography that will never go out of style. That’s not to say that just because a photo has been shot or converted to monochrome it’s guaranteed to be a great photo. The choice to go black and white must have some meaningful relationship to the subject matter or scene to be effective. For this assignment, we asked readers to submit their best black-and-white photos that use the dramatic impact of monochrome in a powerful way. Our six favorite images here certainly show just that.

Baby in the Basket
“The ‘Baby in the Basket’ is from Panpet Village or Long-Neck Women Village in Demoso Township, Kayah State, Myanmar,” Eduardo S. Seastres explains. “Most women from their ethnic group followed their tradition and culture of wearing neck rings made of brass and also carrying a child in a basket as a symbol of love for the baby. This is the tradition basket used in the countryside to carry vegetables, fruits, and sometimes a baby.” © Eduardo S. Seastres

Donna Mullins captured this mysterious image of patrons at a restaurant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, with a Canon PowerShot SX260 HS camera at 1/30 second, f/3.5. © Donna Mullins

Skyway Aerial
“I love shooting from a helicopter,” Kathleen Finnerty says. “On this particular shoot, I had the pilot fly over my favorite local bridge, the Sunshine Skyway, connecting Pinellas County and Manatee County over Tampa Bay. The image has been converted and contrast added through Photoshop.” She shot it with a Nikon D750 and a Nikkor 70-300mm lens at 1/600 second, f/9, ISO 500. © Kathleen Finnerty

Moon Over Los Angeles
“This shot was taken from the hills in Topanga Canyon, about 20 miles to downtown,” Carl Grooms notes. “It is not usually this clear. The sun had just set a short time before.” He captured it with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV and a Sigma 150-600mm lens at 1/160 second, f/6.3. © Carl Grooms

Arkansas Valley Rain
Steve Gandy shot this image of sheets of rain falling on the hills near Buena Vista, Colorado, with a Nikon D800E and a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens on a tripod at 1/500 second, f/4.5, ISO 100. © Steve Gandy

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