Sonel’s B/W Photo Challenge: Nature

This week, Sonel has started a new challenge encouraging us to edit some of our nature photos into black and white. I’ve never thought of doing this before, although I’ve admired many such images in other bloggers’ posts. I thought I may as well have a go at it, and was surprised at how relatively simple it is.

Here are the fabulous curves of the Karst hills which line the Li river between Guilin and Yangshuo. The scenery here has been described as “the best under Heaven,” and I can quite believe it. It was as if I had been transported into an ancient Chinese pen and ink drawing. The elegance was just astounding.


The great Tang Dynasty poet Han Yu (768-824) was inspired to write. “The river winds like a green silk ribbon, while the hills are like jade hairpins.”  Such an apt and beautiful description.


More than 40,000 hills lie along the two sides of the river, which runs for more than 150 kilometres.  Along the route, there are banyan trees and bamboo, as well as pretty little cottages and fishing boats. The sense of peace one feels whilst cruising slowly past this amazing landscape, is indescribable.


To see more entries for Sonel’s black and white theme, just click here.



59 comments on “Sonel’s B/W Photo Challenge: Nature

  1. Pingback: black and white photo challenge: texture | my sweetpainteddreams

  2. Pingback: Black and White Tuesday: Toys | WoollyMuses

  3. Those Karst hills look stunning! What a fascinating landscape. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Guilin and the Li River are high on my list of places to go. I’ve seen many beautiful color pictures, but I love the look of these black and white ones too, Sylvia. Have you seen the movie, The Painted Veil? It was filmed here and the scenery is breathtaking. 🙂

  5. I love it in black and white. I notice your comment about fading. The good news is that they won’t fade any farther because you have them preserved here. You can do a lot with old photos in photoshop, but I’m not experienced enough yet to know exactly what. I bet Leanne Cole would, though. 🙂 Have a great week, Sylvia. 🙂

      • Yes, it does, but now you have them digitized, and they won’t fade completely away. That’s all I meant to say. Some of my grandmother’s old photographs eventually got almost invisible. Of course, that was almost 100 years ago! Whew, time flies! 🙂 I’m thinking in 100 years you won’t care. 🙂

  6. Pingback: Black and White Photo Challenge: Nature | melonpopzdropz ...

  7. I really do feel transported back in time with these B&W conversions you had done AD. Like those little boats following each other along the ‘green silk ribbon’ and those Karst hills have an etching feel about them too.
    Top choice of images !

  8. What a great job you’ve done here AD and you’re right, it looks like a Chinese pen and ink drawing hon. I love it! Thanks so much for taking part hon. Much appreciated. 😀 *big hugs*

      • If anyone would understand her, it would be you. She was a world traveler that lived in China most of her life. To me, her biography is more exciting than her books. But she was the first woman to receive a Pulitzer prize for “The Good Earth.” I wonder if they will ever hand out a Pulitzer for blogging?!!!

  9. great photos, well done on the conversion to b & w! I’m a huge fan of b & w, I have found it doesn’t suit all shots but when I find one it does suit is is striking!

  10. Hi – I’d love to see the colour images and the ‘jade hairpins’. Great post.

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