What is it about black and white wedding photography that ensures it persists? Most of us see our world in colour. Therefore, intentionally removing this and using black and white for your wedding photography may seem more than a little strange! After all, doesn’t this mean that you will ultimately lose a lot from the images?

Black and white photography is possibly the oldest and most well-documented photography style. Yet, despite the arrival of colour film as far back as 1935, it has managed to maintain a lasting appeal. It can be thought-provoking, emotive, and even contemporary, but why?

Black And White Wedding Photography

When we look at a black-and-white image, we instantly see something unfamiliar. The lack of colour in a photograph immediately changes how it is viewed. A picture can now feel more dramatic, the composition more decisive, and the subject more transparent. As elements that may otherwise be distracting lose impact, the image’s narrative becomes more robust. In turn, we are pulled towards looking deeper into each photograph.

Colour, as you see, can often be distracting, which is why I love to use black and white images in my wedding photography stories. The simplicity of black and white allows the narrative of my storytelling to stand out while the people and their emotions take focus.

By processing an image in black and white, you can draw the viewer into the shot and almost be able to show them the reason it was initially taken, that raw, natural, emotional moment captured between a couple on one of the most essential and probably vibrant days of their lives. Emotive black and white documentary wedding photography is centred around human interaction, so showing this emotion quickly and clearly, is crucial. On the other hand, colour can evoke the opposite by drawing the viewer’s eye away from the narrative.

Wedding guest dancing in Christie's Bistro at Manchester University

Why Choose Black And White Wedding Photography

One of the most common reasons people want to have their wedding photos taken in black and white these days is because it lends a certain timeless quality to the photographs, a classic elegance that time cannot touch.

Black and white photography provides a beautiful range between the blackest of blacks and the whitest of whites. Bold and colourful makeup is no longer distracting, and elements like skin discolouration dissolve into the darkness. The subjects become more natural-looking, and the most detailed images become a work of art. It’s not hard to see why many top fashion photographers have built their entire careers on shooting almost entirely in black and white. There are many excellent reasons black and white photography has not been made redundant and still exists very prominently today.

Bride and Groom portrait by the river at the Old Palace Chester

Black And White Wedding Photography Endures

Even from the earliest days of photography over 170 years ago, black & white photography has endured the test of time, even into the present day with the coming of colour photography. It has, over the years, proven itself as a stable part of photography. A piece that isn’t going anywhere and only seems to be increasing in popularity with both photographers and the general public. The black & white photography legacy left by some of the most outstanding photographers, such as Yousuf Karsh and Ansel Adams, still inspires and encourages all types of reportage wedding photographers, both amateur and professional, to work in black & white. In other words, black & white photography is seen as a beautiful art form that holds a great deal in the hearts and minds of both photographers, publishers and the artistic world and still survives to this day to help educate, inspire and move people from all walks of life in various different ways as these moments are brought to our eyes in a more artistic and emotive way.

So, why would you not want to have one of the most memorable days of your life captured in this thought-provoking, raw and atmospheric way? 

To help with your wedding planning we have put together a comprehensive 32 step guide taking you every step of the way from picking your venue, to last minute details. Wedding planning, shouldn’t be stressful, and we would love to join you on your journey from saying “Yes” to “I Do”

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