The latest on D7000 skin tones?

Started May 24, 2011 | Discussions thread
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Artistry, actuality and realism
In reply to Cytokine, May 25, 2011

In photography we are always deciding (whether purposefully or implicitly) whether we place more value on artistry and our vision/interpretation of a moment, or whether we need to stay "true" to some aspect of the subject. In portraits, where our main goal is often to represent the person as "they truly are" I feel we have less lattitude for interpretation: blonde hair should be blonde, tanned skin should be tanned, etc. If I want to re-interpret my subject without the constraint of "actuality" (what they actually look like), I opt for some sort of B&W treatment. It seems (even Ansel Adams pointed this out), that psychologically, we have less of an expectation of "actuality" or "realism" when we deal with B&W. Now that things like skin tones become shades of gray, we are only constrained with making sure that an anglo person doesn't look brown or black skinned and viceversa, but the shading in between becomes freer. The focus is less actual color or shading and more form and texture, and of course, usually in a portrait, the "window of the eyes."

Here are two examples to illustrate the point. In the first, I let the overcast lighting and resulting WB (giving the white dress priority) to perhaps color the skin tones too warmly (I am thinking a re-edit to re-render the skin tones is in order). In the B&W shot, it's no longer about the skin tones.

Seeking the heart and spirit in each image

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