I like black shoes. That being said, I think there's a logical explanation why brown is favored so much here. There are just less interesting ways you can incorporate a black shoe into a fit. Some outfits absolutely call for it and there, black shoes look great. But it will never be a real challenge to combine them succesfully, and much of this forum is exactly about that: pulling off delicate, well-thought-of fits with ease.
Shell would be too informal for my only black shoe. Calf all the way.