“I decided to photograph in black and white,” he says, “because I thought, This is extremely sad. Other than the flags, there are no colors left here.” But when he found a waterlogged family photo album lying in the street, he was startled to see the colors that had smudged and blended together. Those saturated hues, he thought, were colors creat­ed by the tsunami. With that palette in mind, Chaskielberg began to turn tragedy into tableau. He asked residents to pose at night, silent and motionless, in the ruins of their old homes or workplaces. Chaskielberg illuminated his subjects with moonlight, streetlights, and flashlights, then used long expo­sures to make the black-­and-­white photographs. Later, after scanning the negatives, he tinted the images in his digital darkroom to match the vivid colors of the photo album.

Read the full Article on National Geographic

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