Architectural Photography

>> Sunday, February 6, 2011

This semester I am taking an architectural photography class at the Boston Architectural College where I taught last semester. I opted to sit out from teaching this semester with Baby Sabbe due to arrive directly in the middle. So far the class is amazing and I am hoping to learn enough to save myself a few bucks by shooting some of my own recent projects. The first class we spent some time analyzing other architectural photographer's websites as our instructor pointed out the good and the bad. Here is a little bit about what we discussed.

The photographer behind all of these images is the very talented Jim Roof. If you have a project in Georgia you should definitely look him up...he is good.

shot one: a corporate office breakroom
1. Taking several images with different exposure settings allows the photographer to merge images to create an overall informative scene. i.e. there is never going to be one shot that would capture the exterior view and different levels of interior lighting (there are two in this scene) so you shoot multiple shots and then merge them together in Photoshop. I will write more on this topic and specific camera settings later.
2. Time of day is important. This dusk sky compliments this scene very nicely.
3. Selecting views with repetition of furniture, fixtures, etc. can help convey a strong perspective.
4. Think about all four corners in the shot, our instructor emphasized this a ton. All four corners should be different and express something different in the scene.
5. Think about how staging can compliment, but not dominate your scene. This apple, again, helps emphasize the perspective lines on the dining counter.
shot two: corporate office lobby
1. Again, take time to capture shots that separately showcase each lighting element at it's best.
2. At both ends of this shot the photographer is telling us that there is something more around the corner. For larger spaces, this is a very important in conveying the size of your project. If it's not just one little room, you need to give hints to allude to that.
3. Sometimes shooting interior spaces at night is the right choice. One good reason would be if the exterior view is unattractive or detracts from the design on the interior. Another reason photographers may choose a night scene is to reflect the interior space back x2 with the windows, allowing the focus to stay on the interior design. 
 shot three: outdoor shopping center
1. Again, all the lighting is perfect.
2. The sky compliments the lighting and allows the focus to stay on the design, not the sky.
3. The people give the image much needed scale.
4. The ability to capture the gondolier in motion gives the shot life.
 shot four: coca-cola museum
1. This shot is awesome.
2. The angle, with the fountain lines curving up to the building, give this shot visual motion.
3. The angle also pulls from vertical alignments from buildings beyond, implying the building was not just designed to be anywhere, it was designed to fit into this exact context.
4. The fountain reflects the architecture, creating a double image.
Hope this helps you see at all the pretty images we look at on blogs, magazines, and ads daily with a bit more of a critical eye. Later I will post tips on actual camera settings for capturing some of these elements.

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