why black & white?

I shoot everything in RAW, and process almost exclusively to black and white. I produce very little colour, because quite frankly I find that the subjective nature of colour gets in the way of the subject matter itself. Too many times I’ve heard people object to a colour photograph on the basis that it’s not “quite the right” colour, or not the colour “they’d expect”. It’s too saturated, or too dull, the green grass “looks blue” to them. Black and white conveys the complete tonal quality of the subject, and that’s all that’s needed. It carries emotion, mood and mystery far more credibly.

Growing up at home on Sydney’s middle North Shore during the 60’s and 70’s, I was introduced to photography by my father Alec. He was wildly passionate about black and white film photography, and as a family we shot and then developed both the film and paper prints in our dark-room which we built under our house. Dad was a dedicated Nikon user and owned a series of film cameras ranging from the original Nikon-F Photomic, through to an EL and EL-2, Nikon’s first electronically-controlled cameras.

This rubbed off on me, and I developed a real passion for black and white photography over colour. Dad has passed on now, but I still pause and think of him each and every time I go out and shoot, and trust that he’d enthusiastically approve. I still use his old film cameras from time to time, and love developing the film in my kitchen sink lab.

If you see any images here that you’d like to use in one of your projects, I have no problem with that. For non-commercial use, all I’d ask is that you acknowledge me as the author and let me know where you’ve used it. If you’d like to use one for commercial reasons, please let me know and we’ll come to a commercial arrangement.

All images are ©Copyright Chris Malikoff, Omaroo Studios – www.omaroo.com


All the best!

Chris Malikoff

1 thought on “why black & white?

  1. Vicki says:


    My husband and were browsing around a vintage market in Geelong (we’re from Melbourne) and I found a stack of unframed B/W photos and I bought one of an indigenous boy with a proud defiant look.
    It was taken by your Dad, Alec Malikoff (as were the others) and he received a merit award in 1980 at the Sydney North shore camera club.
    There were some lovely images.
    Not sure how they made it down here to Victoria!
    I love black and white photography too and my Dad used to do a bit (he’s an artist) in a home darkroom.

    Hope this email finds you as I see this site is 2010.



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