Two of the things I look for when shooting in black and white are lines and shadows. Over the years I’ve found that subjects with great lines and interesting shadows really look good in black and white.
Last week I received an email from a reader basically asking what went through my mind as I approached a shot like this. In the days of using black and white film I would have said “f/8 at 1/250th” but with today’s evaluative metering systems, getting a good first exposure doesn’t really enter my mind yet. All I really concentrate on is composition for the first few shots knowing that the camera’s meter will give me a good starting point and the LCD will help me fine tune as needed.
I thank the Lord that the days of counting exposures on a roll of Tri-X are over and I can “play” with the exposure compensation to my heart’s content. I think this one took me about a dozen before I got a shot that looked halfway decent!