When selective color works

Portraits for Flashes of Hope, a volunteer program at Children’s Hospitals across the country, are all produced in Black and White. I have been shooting these portraits for many years, and I love the black and white, improving my work over time. ┬áThere are many good reasons for this stylistic choice: The portraits stand apart from family snapshots. They look classic, timeless. They can often make an ill subject appear more healthy and vibrant. The monochrome style puts less emphasis on clothing and more emphasis on the face.

But every so often, one of my images begs to be seen with selective color treatment. Let me show you what I mean.  This child came to me crying and refusing to look at the camera even with the comforting words of both parents, toys on hand and a little brother who was happy to help. The only trick that worked that day was a stream of bubbles. Lots of bubbles that you could reach out and pop. The bubbles just kept coming, thanks to the quick actions of my assistant, and nobody cared about the camera anymore. Even when one bubble got in his eye.

I see an echo between the bubbles, the boys’ eyes and the eyes not the minions on his shirt. I guess he should have worn goggles, too.

#selectivecolor, #blackandwhite, #portrait, #children, #bubbles