Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Black and White Macro

It occurred to me recently that you see very few black and white macro images. To some extent this may reflect the fact that brightly coloured insects, which are often the subject of choice for macro photographers, may not lend themselves to being photographed in black and white. Instead, black and white photography is normally considered to be an effective way to introduce mood to an image, typically landscape images, or to emphasise textures for wildlife subjects such as elephants. But having given some more thought to this issue I came to the conclusion that some macro subjects would be well suited to black and white photography.

Earlier this year I photographed some Common Rough Woodlice and was struck by the fact that up-close they look rather menacing and almost warrior-like. They are predominantly grey, highly textured and tend to lurk in damp, dark places. All of which made me think that it should be possible to create almost film noir type images of these menacing looking creatures emerging from the darkness. The results can be seen below.

Do these images work? Well, you can be the judge of that. I imagine they will divide opinion but it's nice to try something different from time-to-time.


Canon 5D with MP-E 65mm macro lens and heavily diffused 580 EXII flash, f11, 1/160, ISO 50


  1. many thanks for your comment Shaun.

  2. Love it. I just did a B&W macro project using film. These helped me with my concepts and ideas.