Capturing Timeless Beauty: Exploring Black and White Photography Through Sunglasses

19th August 2023 3 min read

Exploring Black and White Photography

Black and white photography is an art form that has stood the test of time, captivating audiences with its timeless elegance and evocative storytelling. While the modern world embraces vibrant colours, the monochromatic charm of black and white photography continues to enchant photographers and viewers alike. In this blog post, we will delve into a unique technique that adds a touch of mystique to black and white photography – using sunglasses to capture the reflection of a light source. Discover how this creative approach can transform your images into captivating visual narratives.

The Allure of Black and White Photography:

Black and white photography holds a unique place in the world of visual arts. Stripped of colour distractions, these images compel us to focus on composition, contrast, and emotion. By eliminating the distraction of colour, black and white photography highlights the interplay of light and shadow, enhancing the depth and drama of a scene. This technique challenges photographers to think creatively and harness the power of simplicity to convey profound stories.

Using Sunglasses for Reflection:

Adding an intriguing twist to the conventional black and white photography, using sunglasses to capture reflections introduces an element of surprise and surrealism. When you place a pair of sunglasses on the model and in front of your camera, you can create mesmerising effects by allowing a light source to be reflected within the frame. The shape of the sunglasses, the lenses can alters the light's path, resulting in unique and unexpected visual distortions that can add a dreamlike quality to your photos or just add a great visual aspect to the image.

Creating Your Shot:

To experiment with this technique, follow these simple steps:

1. **Select Your Light Source:** Choose a strong and distinct light source, such as sunlight streaming through a window, a streetlamp at night, or even a candle's flame. In this case we used a Godox AD-S65W softbox.

2. **Positioning the Sunglasses:** Carefully position your model with a pair of sunglasses in front of your camera light source. Adjust the angle and position until the desired reflection is visible within the sunglasses' lenses.

3. **Adjusting Settings:** Set your camera to manual mode to have greater control over the exposure. We used F/8 on the camera and then set light to match the camera settings (to do this, it is better to use a light meter rather then trail and error). Then adjust your settings to achieve the desired look – you may want to slightly underexpose the image to enhance the contrast.

4. **Framing and Composition:** Pay close attention to the composition. The reflection within the sunglasses becomes an integral part of the image, so ensure it enhances the overall storytelling.

5. **Capture and Experiment:** Take a series of shots, experimenting with different angles, positions, and light sources. Explore how the reflections change as you move the sunglasses or alter the camera settings or camera position.

6. **Post-Processing:** When editing your images, emphasize the contrast and enhance the black and white tones. Fine-tune the reflection within the sunglasses to achieve the desired level of distortion and clarity.

Inspiration and Interpretation:

Using sunglasses to capture reflections opens up a world of creative possibilities. The distorted reflections can evoke feelings of mystery, nostalgia, or otherworldliness, depending on the context of your image. In this case we went for the symmetry within the image to create our final piece. The juxtaposition of the real scene and the surreal reflection can spark the viewer's imagination and encourage them to interpret the image in their own unique way.


Black and white photography has an enduring appeal that transcends time and trends. By incorporating sunglasses to capture reflections of light sources, you can add a touch of magic and intrigue to your images. This technique invites viewers to explore the interplay of reality and distortion, prompting a deeper connection with the visual narrative you create. As you experiment with this creative approach, remember that the true power of black and white photography lies not just in capturing images, but in capturing emotions, stories, and moments frozen in time.