PDN Photo of the Day

Coloring in “The Decisive Moment”

Coloring in "The Decisive Moment"

"Harlem, NY," 1947. © Henri Cartier-Bresson

USA. New York City. Harlem. 1947.“Harlem, NY,” 1947. © Henri Cartier-Bresson

Though Henri Cartier-Bresson did not craft his photographic career by honing the advancements made to the medium by the advent of color film (he believed the color film of the 1950s to be too technically and esthetically limiting), other photographers carried the torch in understanding how to capture “the decisive moment” in hues that echo reality. “Cartier-Bresson: A Question of Colour,” on view until Sunday at the Somerset House in London, is a group exhibition that includes the work from photographers such as Ernst Haas, Fred Herzog, Joel Meyerowitz and Alex Webb, who brought Cartier-Bresson’s formal elements of photojournalism to life in vivid color. The exhibition includes ten photographs by Cartier-Bresson never before exhibited in the UK and 75 images from 14 internationally-recognized photographers.

–Lindsay Comstock

Fred_Herzog_portrait_Somerset_House_London“Man with Bandage,” 1968. © Fred Herzog

Portfolio 9.tif“Madison Avenue, New York City,” 1975. © Joel Meyerowitz

Ernst_Haas_New_York_City_Somerset_House_London“New York City, USA,” 1981. ©Ernst Haas

Saul_Leiter_Snow_Somerset_House_London “Snow,” 1960. ©Saul Leiter

Karl_Baden_Massachusetts_Somerset_House_London“Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts,” 2009. © Karl Baden

Henri_Cartier_Bresson_Brooklyn_Somerset_House_London“Brooklyn, NY,” 1947. © Henri Cartier-Bresson

Posted in:



, , , , , , ,





  1. I feel colour is a far more difficult “medium” to work with when allowing the eye to pick out the various pieces that form the decisive moment jigsaw. Black and white, in my opinion, guides the eye far more easily. Colour require balance, for the hues to work with other and still capture the decisive moment within the framework set. Of course, if it doesn’t work in colour, you can always fallback on B&W. B&W can bring the subject(s) to the fore.

    Regardless, these photographs are all timeless and beautiful in their own ways.

Top of Page