What’s your main reason for shooting primarily in black and white?
For me, what I’m capturing in the frame is more powerful than a momentary colour. If I shoot someone in a red shirt today, it won’t necessarily define the characteristics of that person. The shirt will be put to wash the next day and a different coloured shirt will be put on.
What characterises a photograph is a moment and the movement captured in it. I believe it’s difficult for viewers to identify whether they like a photograph because of the colours in it, or because of what has been captured in it. And this is very important to me. I prefer for my audience to concentrate heavily on the frame rather than being influenced by the colours.
Colours will fade, will be repainted and will be rediscovered and renewed. But the moment that’s been captured is inevitable and unreproducible. Metaphysically, nothing can be compared to the human eye, and cameras can never accurately capture colours or even shades of black and white. My priority is visual stimulation to the heart, which the viewers can connect to.
Having said that, I do shoot in colour for assignments and projects, but for my personal portfolio, I prefer black and white. Understanding light is extremely important in photography, whether you’re shooting in colour or in black and white.
A lot depends on the light. Since I don’t have control over natural light, I tend to switch, depending on how cloudy or bright it is. So, I don’t have a hard and fast rule as to what mode of colour I shoot in.