Harking back to the film photography era, split toning is a traditional technique that continues to thrive with both film-based and digital photographers.
Originally a process whereby prints were bathed in different, contrasting toners (usually blue and sepia) to produce results that contained both warm and cool tones simultaneously, split-toned images can look very striking, combining the dramatic qualities of a black and white print with the enhanced depth and aesthetic appeal that colour brings.
Unfortunately they were messy to make, and impossible to duplicate. Thankfully though the effect can be simulated in the digital darkroom, and the results can be just as powerful. All that?s required is an image-editing program such as Photoshop.
Like many photography enthusiasts, Kelly Castro has taken full advantage of this digital revolution. Based in California, the photography and design professional has been exploring the seemingly endless possibilities open to the digital black and white photographer for the past eight years, and during his photographic voyage of discovery has experimented extensively with split-toning effects.
Describing this particular example of his work, Kelly explains, Some friends and I had driven north for the day to surf and explore a very rural area of the Nicoya Peninsula, in Costa Rica. As we were leaving the beach I noticed this incredible cloud formation with rays of light pouring through. We pulled the jeep to the side of the road and two cyclists rode by as I was setting up the shot. I waited for the first cyclist to pass through the frame before I caught this scene?