With B&W v colour though, they are both "photography" and are capable of being performed by the same person, they just need to shove a different film in the camera and "hey presto" they become a "colour photographer". The skill set is essentially the same, you use exactly the same equipment in essentially the same way, you don't even need to change your camera to keep up with the technology, just load it with a colour film.
This is just not true. It takes very different vision and different ways of seeing to be a great color or great B&W photographer.
Adams did some color but its not what he considered his serious work. The reason why is control. He shot B&W because of the control he got from the zone. Because of different development times of the negatives to place tones of grays in areas that correspond with the zones that were the way he say the scene, which in many cases was much different from it was in reality.
With color film you do not have that kind of control. If you start changing negative development times you start getting sever uncorrectable color shifts. Many zone system photographers considered color as a barbaric process because of that lack of control. Adams of course would never have said something like that but for the work he considered his serious work he was a B&W, large format, zone system photographer. And the zone system takes a much different technical approach than color.
Now with digital its hard to say what Adams would be doing now B&W or color but with the ability of color to now extend the range and to place zones the way he would see them in his minds eye I think he would have come up with a zone system for color and B&W digital. He saw in B&W. He even wrote about it some. With these new advances in B&W digital Leica M Monochrom and some of the digital medium and large format native B&W backs he might just be shooting a phase one large format B&W digital back on his Deardorff. We'll never know.
Yes, and I mentioned most of that in my post, but you didn't quote that part !
I did say that Ansel preferred B&W as being more artistic because he could manipulate it more etc., etc. and that he used it for his erious work, whilst colour was used for commercial jobs and magazine work. I did also point out that tone control is more important in B&W etc.
But thank you for pointing that out to to me, in case I hadn't understood what I wrote.
My point was simply that "colour replacing B&W" is different because a photographer can switch to colour if that is what the client wants (as Ansel did) by simply changing film and a relatively slight adaptation of technique. This is far different to the requirement for a painter to switch to photography if a client wants his portrait photographed instead of painted.
I quite agree that as an artistic medium B&W is different to colour, but we have referred to "paintings" as a lump, not watercolour, oil, acrylic, tempera, gouache, or impressionist, realist, cubist etc. If we are referring to "painters" as a group, without microdividing them, surely "photographers" are a group without subdividing into their preferred artistic medium?
My point still holds. When colour was taking over from mono, then any photographer could accomodate that easily, if they so wish. When the wedding photography business shifted over from all B&W to mostly colour, in the years after WW2, photographers could adapt by simply switching film (we aren't talking about great individual works of art here, just recording somebody's day with good photographs. This is not done as easily if the wedding market were to switch to wanting just video and not stills. The photographer would need to learn new techniques, new skills and get new equipment.
I agree with what you are saying, as I have agreed with other things you have said in this thread. However, you miss my point as I pointed out the differences you mention, but that is only relevant in an "art" context. For work where the paying public wants colour shots, for weddings, portraits, etc. then any good photographer can adapt easily enough to that market. That is not the same as saying they will like it as much for their personal "art". I did also mention that it is easier to adapt from B&W to colour than vice versa, for the reasons you point out.