Get more sleep.....shoot in B&W!
There are lots of artistic reasons why B&W images are appealing and the much smarter, more artistically eloquent are able to write tomes about this (I will have a crack in my next post) but I like to shoot with B&W in mind mainly for more practical lifestyle reasons.
Basically, I’m a pretty lazy photographer. When a lot of people are out at dawn in the cold getting set up and hoping for those dazzling sunrise shots, I’m not. I really can’t be bothered getting out of bed to go shooting when I know, particularly in Melbourne, that the chances of getting a good sunrise are pretty slim. I have made the effort a couple of times and rarely has it been worth my while. Crappy colours, too much cloud or too little, it generally leaves me feeling like I shouldn’t have bothered leaving the warm horizontal position at some ungodly hour on my day off (I have a 7am workday start so I do know about getting up early and it's unpleasant). And when I'm holidaying, the last thing on my mind is to ruin a good sleep-in I’ve paid for. And even if I do get a rare sunrise shot I usually convert it to B&W anyway, so what’s the point?
Sunsets…meh, take them or leave them… again, they occur at the wrong time of the day for most of the year. It's usually around dinner time when I’m already enjoying a glass of bubbly or G&T with Mrs Fritz with my feet up on the couch. And again I reckon when I have gone out and made the effort I’m usually only happy with the colours about 20% of the time (the exception to this is sunsets on the West Coast, in places like Broome).
So this brings me to a very practical reason why I shoot with B&W in mind. If you forget about colour, your photography world opens up. No longer are you constrained to the usual golden hour/sunsets/sunrise to get those striking colours. Your subject matter devoid of those distracting “pretty” colours can now be the star of your images. So instead of having a small window of an hour or two, you have most of the day to get out there and be creative, especially on those grey, cloudy days that Melbourne has plenty of!