Black and White film have always been my favorites. For some reason, they seem to pull me into their movie world so that I feel apart of the scene and able to gaze out beyond the cameras scope and glimpse what lies beyond. The lighting of the old black and white films from the 1930’s-1950’s seems far more dramatic to me and far more effective at focusing my attention to the screen. But my son grew up in the era of color: color television, color computer monitors, color video games, color photographs and color movies. When Rob was a young child, I had created a number of games for him to play using HyperCard (a nifty little application that came installed on the early Mac’s.) My monitor in those days was grayscale (which I thought was the greatest thing – so much more exciting than the 1-bit monitors that PC/DOS users were stuck with) – but it wasn’t color like our TV, so like any other red-blood American kid in the late 1980’s, Rob just could not understand why I spent so much time creating games that had no color and fairly crude animation as compared to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on VHS. So I tried to keep my enthusiasm to myself and shifted my attention to things other than designing games on my trusty MacPlus.
Zoom ahead a decade now and perhaps you can imagine my delight when Rob came home after his first year at college and was going on and on about these great movies he had discovered by the director, Alfred HItchcock, which were in black & white! Well, that opened up the floodgates for Hubby and I to introduce our newly enlightened prodigal son to all of our favorite films, like Citizen Kane, Metropolis, The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. Terwilliger, and of course, all the great Humphrey Bogart films like “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre”,”The Maltese Falcon”,”Petrified Forest”, and “Casablanca”. Although those films are 50-75 years old now, they still hold up due to the superb art direction, lighting, writing, directing, and acting,
High-Definition and even 3-D television and movies, as cool as those are, seem like an entirely different medium as compared to the old B&W classics. If you’re too young to remember the “old days” and haven’t yet discovered these on DVD or Blu-Ray, make yourself a bucket of popcorn, turn all the lights out, and switch on Turner Classics on the next rainy afternoon and tell me what you think. Am I right?
Ironically, after all that rambling about the glories of black and white, I have for you tonight some experimental artwork I created inspired by a still-shot of Humphrey Bogart – in color! (The devil made me do it.) 😉
*Note: If you follow the link above for “The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. Terwilliger” there are a few video clips there of the film, and you’ll probably wonder what the heck’s wrong with me because those clips are in Technicolor. True enough. But just like in the 1939 Judy Garland classic, “The Wizard of Oz”, was B&W for all the scenes taking place in Kansas while Oz and Munchkinland were in color, so too does Dr. T intertwine both black and white scenes in among those in color.
Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day
The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)