If you have recently stepped into the world of digital photography, you may be wondering how to take black & white photos with a digital camera. Don’t worry. All you need is a top-rated digital camera and some good shooting skills. But that’s where we come in.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Black and white photos have been around since the dawn of photography and they are still used for creative effect.
  • Most cameras will feature a dedicated monochrome image or black and white photo setting.
  • If your camera lacks such a feature, you can always fix it later by using Adobe Photoshop or a similar photo-editing software tool.

Why Take Black and White Photos?

Budding digital photographers tend to take black and white images for creative effect. There is just something cool and iconic about monochromatic photography, particularly if you are attempting to capture a retro feel of some kind. After all, it was decades upon decades before cameras could capture shots in color. If you want some contemporary creativity then you should learn how to take a double exposure with a digital camera.

Insider Tip

Read the instructions, dive into the settings menu, and find the setting for black and white photos.

How to Take Black and White Photos with a Digital Camera?

Here are some universal tips and guidelines to help you make the best black and white shots of your life. The specific steps may differ depending on the make and model of your camera, so we have tried to keep these tips as general as possible.

Dive Into Your Settings Menu

One similar thing about learning how to take black and white photos and knowing how to take bokeh photos with a digital camera is that you have to change your settings. You will have to become intimately familiar with your camera’s various settings and functionalities one day, so why not make it today? Read the instructions, dive into the settings menu, and find the setting for black and white photos. With film, you can just insert a black and white film roll to create the effect, but when it comes to a digital camera, the correct setting must be engaged (unless you fix it in post, which we will get to later).

Insider Tip

When it comes to selecting the right mode for a black and white photo, you should start with portrait mode.

Go for Portrait Mode

When it comes to selecting the right mode for a black and white photo, you should start with portrait mode. This will narrow the camera’s focus, resulting in a more “artistic” black and white shot. Alternatively, you can opt for something called “aperture priority” mode, which will essentially create the same effect. Of course, this is art. There are no hard and fast rules here, so feel free to experiment.

Fix it with Photoshop

You can always convert color raw files to black and white using Photoshop or a similar image editor. It can be fairly easy to turn a full-color photo into a monochrome image or a black and white photograph using the settings menu with one of these software applications. These apps offer a full tonal range for color images, with a dedicated monochrome mode, picture control, and various other tools for digital photographers.

Warning

With film, you can just insert a black and white film roll to create the effect, but when it comes to a digital camera, the correct setting must be engaged.

F.A.Q.

Digital or film – What’s better for black and white photography?

There is no such thing as “better” when it comes to art. Film and digital both have their advantages and disadvantages when it comes to shooting in black and white. As digital technology continues to advance, the differences between the two continue to decrease.


Why is black and white photography important?

Not only is black and white photography part of our shared history, but it can also help create a certain aesthetic “feel” that color photography cannot reproduce. There is something about all of those shades of gray that go beyond vintage. In other words, it creates a mood.


Should I shoot in black and white or shoot in color and convert later?

This depends on personal preference. If you shoot in black and white you will create images exactly as you picture them, but your editing options will be limited (you can’t go back to color). The reverse is true with shooting in color and using software to convert to black and white.



STAT: The first successful black and white images were taken in 1825 by Joseph Nicephore Niepce, a French developer. (source)

Lawrence Bonk

Lawrence Bonk is a copywriter with a decade of experience in the tech space, with columns appearing in Engadget, Huffington Post and CBS, among others. He has a cat named Cinnamon.

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