Gadfly Gives Up or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and
Love Digital Black-and-White | Mike Johnston

Digital took black-and-white away. To me it’s the biggest change about the Digital Transition (which I define as 1994–2011). „Black and white are the colors of photography,“ said Robert Frank. That „are“ would now have to be changed to „were.“ I’ve made the point many times that for some of us—those of us who approach working with a camera by learning to see the way the camera and lens sees—being able to convert a color file to B&W is not the same thing as having a camera that only shoots B&W. If the camera natively shoots color, I see in color. Can’t help it. People who look at it like it’s only a technical question can’t see the point in a B&W-only camera; they’d just convert the file. They don’t get it: we see with our brains, and if the way you conceive of making pictures is to adapt your brain to the way the camera and lens are recording the image, then you’ll only „see“ in B&W if that’s what your camera is seeing. So for a long time I agitated for dedicated B&W camera, saying I’d buy one when someone made it. Then someone did…Leica. Leica was a slightly more expensive brand of camera in the marketplace when I got into photography, costing a modest 10 to 30% more than similar Nikon equipment. Now, Leicas are Veblen goods marketed mainly to the carriage trade and cost many multiples of what similar equipment costs…..


Fuji X100S

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