Feininger on B&W versus colour

“Black-and-white photography is essentially an abstract medium, while color photography is primarily realistic. Furthermore, in black-and-white a photographer is limited to two dimensions – perspective and contrast – whereas in color a photographer works with three: perspective, contrast, and color. In order to be able to exploit the abstract qualities of his medium, a photographer who works in black-and-white deliberately trains himself to disregard color; instead, he evaluates color in terms of black-and-white, shades of gray, and contrast of light and dark. A color photographer’s approach is the exact reverse: not only is he very much aware of color as ‘color’, but he decidedly tries to develop a ‘color eye’ – a sensitivity to the slightest shifts in hue, saturation, and brightness of color.”

Andreas Feininger, “Successful Color Photography (1966)