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A printmaker's progress

Photo Fridays – Colour Versus Tone


witty's walk

Witty’s Walk

When choosing images to turn into etchings I usually convert them first into a monochromatic picture to see if the image packs enough of a punch to work as a photo etching. Often when I do this I find the monochromatic image has a greater appeal and  more artistic quality. Sometimes a pretty but unexceptional photo gains a new life when reworked in muted tones. The reduction of color not only allows for greater play with tones and lighting but helps to focus on story or mood in the image. Sometimes the loss of color is not a good thing. I offer three images today where I reduced the color to muted sepia tones. I leave it to you to decide which you prefer. The pine branches above are beautiful in full color. Does the sepia toned version add anything to the image?

Witty's Walk 2

Witty’s Walk 2

This next image benefits from the punch of red I think, though the sepia toned version tells its own story.



Forgotten 2

Forgotten 2

Lastly, while the color image below shows a brilliant dappled light effect, its monochromatic version takes on a more sinister appearance.

Tangled Web

Tangled Web

Tangled Web 2

Tangled Web 2

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend and sending a big thank you to all my new followers this week!


Author: chiaink

World travelled yet never weary, eloquent and evocative, Chiarina's artworks sing with a sensitive and sensuous spirit.

6 thoughts on “Photo Fridays – Colour Versus Tone

  1. The last one is amazing. 🙂

  2. So interesting, Chia. I love color, so I am naturally drawn to the colored images. That said, the monochromatic ones have a very strong impact for me, especially that last one. I feel the monochromatic prints cast an aura of mystery, timelessness, history, gravitas, that have a deep effect. Thank you once again for sharing so interestingly your process. I always leave here more informed and inspired! xo

    • I also want to mention that you have helped me understand better the costume choice of a choreographer I am performing with soon. For this show, we will be wearing white a very pale grey and blue tones. I know this helps give the lighting designer the opportunity to use us and our costumes more easily as canvases. But I also now appreciate from reading your post that the muted tones will allow the focus to be more on the mood and content of the movement. Thanks again!

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