As any photographer knows, with good lighting, white balance, and calibration, your camera should accurately reproduce every color of the cosplay rainbow. But not every costume needs to dazzle the retinas. In fact, some shots benefit from a stark palette.

In some cases, photographers are eschewing their color snaps in favor of old-school black and white. In other words, black and white… is the new black.

Back in the day (when the day was in the late 19th/early 20th centuries), color photography was the sole province of scientists. Later, color film made its way into the market, but it was considered too expensive for everyday use until the 1970s. Now using black and white over color is a considered a bold move.

It is. Black and white doesn’t reproduce reality. It evokes mood. Take the harsh, almost uncomfortable look of Doctor Who’s Weeping Angel; the romanticized view of Wolverine; the retro flair of Columbia in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Every one of these shots benefited from the absence of color. 

We found 11 cosplay pics where the photographer chose more than fifty shades of gray, rather than in glorious technicolor.  What’s your favorite shot? Let us know in the comments what you think of oldie-timey photography with ultra-modern costumes.