Just a short thought on The Allure of Black and White Photography. I really like color photography, but B&W seems to me to the be the soul of photography. From the actual prints I have seen of Adams, Weston, Capa, Smith, and the like, it seems to me that B&W lays bare the key elements of the subjects.
Portraits for me present the people more to the core, more raw and unhidden by color. Even Curtis’ North American first people images seem so much better in BW than if they had been in color. Porter is one of the master that really made color sing, but to me his color images would have been just as good or better in color.
One of the modern wonders of digital photography is that both color and BW images can easily be made from the RAW file. I often don’t make the decision if an image should be color or BW until I process it. But I almost always look at the BW version, even if I make the print color because for me I can tell by looking at an image in BW if it is one I like.
Its just a personal choice but for me BW images are the soul of photography.