5 Favorite Portrait B&W American Revolution Photos

March 31, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

I first learned photography using film. My first SLR (single-lens reflex) camera was a Nikon 20-20. Those small film canisters had the most 36 exposures and were for either color or B&W. Through classes, I learned how to develop & print in B&W. It was fun creating unique photos by adding dodging & burning techniques. Now, with a digital Nikon D500 SLR camera, I'll later convert some images to B&W in a digital darkroom using On1 Software. My preference is B&W, even in the movies I mostly watch.

They are from the 30s and 40s, especially the film noir (dark film) genre. You may have never heard of this category before? Their popularity was during the mid to late 40s. This film style was gritty and urban, with stark lighting, flawed heroes, and shady characters. Fun movies to watch; you will be hooked! My favorites are Laura, The Maltese Falcon, and Double Indemnity. 

After a reenactment when reviewing my event gallery, I'll determine if the photo should be in color or B&W. For my reenactment portraits, so many of them color it doesn't have the same emotional impact! What do you think?

This photo is from the Washington Crossing event in 2018. It's George Washington using his spyglass to view the other side of the Delaware River, my favorite B&W photo.

Portraits make great B&W photos. Here is a perfect example. In color this photo, from the Assault on Ft Mercer 2022 event doesn't inject the look of a tired, veteran America Revolution soldier. In blog #55, I explained taking this photo. 

This photo is from the Battle of Germantown 2017. It looks like it was taken in a photography studio. The natural light and his expression make for a beautiful photo which I discuss in blog #25.

I captured many good photos including this one, at the Washington Crossing 2017 event.The rowers were lining up to board the Durham boats. Converting him to B&W heightens his rugged features.

This photo was also taken at the at the Washington Crossing 2017 event. Instead of a rower he is a soldier. The B&W intensifies his weariness of the moment. If photography existed that Christmas night in 1776 this is how the soldiers would have looked!  

Thank you for reading! 

Blog # 59 will be posted in May 2023. Be safe & well!

Ken Bohrer




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