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Photographer Leverages Vivid Colours to Convey a Visceral Vibe

Polina Washington spent years solely capturing and printing black and white movie earlier than adapting highly effective and vibrant coloration to inform a narrative in her photographs.

Connecting with Coloration in Pictures

Primarily based in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, and is at the moment staying in Bali, Indonesia, Washington is a self-described visible explorer. Though she acquired a level in cinematography, she hardly ever if ever labored with synthetic mild in her pictures, and solely shot on black and white movie and says didn’t actually perceive coloration.

“I by no means imagined pictures in coloration,” Washington tells PetaPixel. “I preferred enjoying with contrasts, silhouettes.”

“I preferred that you possibly can reduce out the superfluous,” she continues. “However in some unspecified time in the future, I simply bought uninterested in it, and I wished to maneuver on. It wasn’t sufficient for me to do monochrome anymore.”

Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography

Since her inventive change to paint, Washington nonetheless creates black and white photographs, however solely on uncommon events and principally in conditions when she will be able to’t improve the specified feeling she desires to painting utilizing coloration.

Seeing as coloration and light-weight go hand in hand for visible storytelling, Washington sees each as two highly effective instruments on this course of.

“Earlier than, I may solely obtain a coloration image with coloured mild, however then I realized to see it in pure mild as effectively, with the identical processing,” she explains.

Telling a Story with Coloration and Gentle

Throughout her inventive journey, Washington realized to learn how coloration and light-weight have an effect on {a photograph}, and methods to use a mixture of each to create cinematic stills with painterly vibes according to her present pictures type.

Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography

“Gentle can conceal what must be hidden or vice versa — to emphasise one thing vital, so it controls the viewer’s consideration very strongly,” Washington explains. “That’s why I at all times take note of the place the accents of sunshine are directed.”

“Gentle additionally helps you separate a personality from the background or merges with it, or focuses consideration,” she continues. “It highlights what’s vital and leaves out what’s not.”

Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography

The dialogue of the consequences of coloration in pictures is extra visceral. It’s because “we are able to’t deny {that a} sure wavelength impacts us in a sure means,” Washington says. “However I attempt to rely alone emotions and the expertise and statement I’ve in pictures and portray when selecting colours within the body.”

“I don’t need to impose a sure situation or emotion on the viewer — I give them the liberty to expertise one thing of their very own as a result of we’re all totally different,” she provides.

Her distinctive pictures type hasn’t gone unnoticed by Leica both, as Washington — for whom the Leica M-system digital camera had been a long-time dream — was one of many first to strive the brand new Leica M11. Having shot with two M-system cameras earlier than, the brand new M11 felt acquainted however extra snug.

“Regarding coloration, I feel all Leica cameras give an excellent RAW picture coloration, which is good to work with within the coloration correction course of,” Washington says. “I at all times edit my pictures, so I don’t have any choice as to what coloration I get in a RAW file. It’s sufficient for me that all the pieces is balanced — then the following step of creativity begins in Lightroom or C1.”

For different photographers prepared to be taught extra concerning the energy of coloration, Washington’s elementary recommendation is to not be afraid to experiment and do it freely, with out the constraints of what could also be thought-about “proper”.

Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography Using color in photography

“Every part new is born solely when somebody decides to strive one thing out of the unusual,” Washington advises. “The identical factor works with mild and coloration. It’s good to grasp the essential rules of working with mild and a few fundamental schemes for common understanding, however then it’s a must to make sure to set your self new and attention-grabbing duties and attempt to clear up them out of the field. That is the way in which to improvement and attention-grabbing photographs.”

Extra of Washington’s work could be discovered on her web site and Instagram.

Picture credit: Photographs by Polina Washington.

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