Istanbul in Black-and-White

Istanbul by Night Istanbul in Black-and-White

Istanbul is overwhelming for the senses.

The smells of coffee and fish and slow-cooked meat and exhaust. The  call-to-prayer echoing from every minaret. The sun on the Bosphorus, the yellow flash of taxicabs, the visual cacophony of a city of 18 million people.

Photographing this churning, breathing, pulsing city never gets boring.

Men on the Train, Istanbul (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

I particularly like the challenge of shooting Istanbul in monochrome. Already photography strips away the smells, the sounds, the tastes; removing one more element forces me to see the madness in front of me from a different perspective.

The circles of sesame-covered simit, the  crisp slanted light on a deserted street, the echoing domes of the mosques– I see a different Istanbul in black-and-white, a romantic, nostalgic Istanbul. Shooting monochrome reminds me why I love this city, why I stay here.

It’s a personal goal to shoot monochromatic film more often. I want to shoot more black-and-white Istanbul, to try to capture that strange grip that holds me in this complicated city. My Black-and-White Cities series has been quiet, but I hope that Istanbul will yield more than one entry in it. As I shoot black-and-white, I’m reminded over and over again that by removing the color, so much more can be revealed.

New Mosque Street View (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Simit Seller (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

The Cat Is Not Impressed (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Slanting Light Istanbul (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Istanbul Snow Haydarpasa (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Fish at the Market (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Tarlabasi Streets (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Haydarpasa Mosque and Trains (Istanbul in Black-and-White)

Side Streets of Eminonu (Istanbul in Black-and-White)


  1. anerdatlarge
    April 20, 2014

    Brilliant! Love them all!

  2. Dalo 2013
    April 20, 2014

    Really impressive series, love the B&W.

    • Katrinka
      April 27, 2014

      Thank you! It’s a fun series to shoot.

  3. OllyTemur
    April 20, 2014

    Love all the photos :D

  4. Silvia
    April 21, 2014

    In love with all of these!!

  5. htmm
    April 22, 2014

    i like :)

  6. Tusk
    April 25, 2014

    Your images are terrific! Thanks. tusk

  7. Cicely B
    February 21, 2018

    LOVE your photos.


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