The Basics

Grain is a property unique to photography – no other medium gives you the same look.

Our mind is accustomed to equating a particular kind of emotion. For instance, images printed in newspapers often appear grainier than they actually are, due to the nature of newspaper printing. This automatically gives a sense of reportage to a grainy B&W image, even if the scene is otherwise quite mundane.

Grain also adds the mood to an otherwise sterile and boring photograph. A grainy black and white photograph may remind you of an old film or flashback in a movie, and can be used to capture a feeling of nostalgia or historic importance.

Modern day technology tries to eliminate digital noise because it is intrusive and not aesthetically pleasing. However, the whole idea of a grainy rendition is something you can achieve only through photography. The use of grains in today’s day and age is almost like a celebration of the medium, allowing you to create a look that is difficult to achieve in any other art form.

So go on – dive into the grains, embrace them. Revisit The Grainy Season. But do remember – a good-looking grain does not alone make an image; you need to combine it with careful composition, good light, unique perspective and most importantly, a perfect moment!