November 20, 2017

Architectural Photography Tips From An Industry Expert

Words + Photos : Michael Robinson

Hufft is a design collective in Kansas City with a passion for quality craftsmanship and a keen interest in the developing role of the designer, fabricator, and modern builder. Their varied backgrounds shape Hufft Projects' unique and holistic approach to design.

Photography is is very important for all phases of architecture. From capturing buildings and spaces for inspiration to documenting existing spaces during the design and construction phases. When a project is complete, Hufft hires an architectural photographer like Michael Robison to capture high resolution images.

So we went straight to the source for some pro architectural photography tips:

1. Use a Wide Angle or Superfish Lens to capture more in your frame. Place elements in the foreground to add layers of depth.  Bonus points if they creating leading lines to draw your eye into the frame.

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2. Pay attention to light / time of day. Exteriors are good in the early morning or late afternoon.  Avoid harsh mid-day sun, unless it works with the subject.  Interiors can have a lot of contrast, so turn on HDR to maximize the information you’re getting from the scene.  

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3. Make sure your camera is horizontally level.  It can easily tilt up or down, which you can fix later in Post-processing with a keystone correction or rotate to level the image, but it’s always best to get it right in-camera. Use the grid on the phone to help you keep lines straight.

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4. Edit using some form of post processing. VSCO and Snapseed on phone, Lightroom or Photoshop on computer.

  • Adjust level.
  • Color & contrast / white balance etc.
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5. Don’t be afraid to Crop.  Sometimes you take a photo and part of it is killer and the rest is just okay... Zoom in on the visual interest.

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6. If something catches your eye, take the shot, move in a few steps, recompose, and take another. You don’t want to miss a shot entirely while you’re looking for the perfect composition.

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Michael Robinson has been shooting Architecture and Interiors for over 10 years.  Michael’s formal training was at the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California.  It was there he learned the technical side of photography and mastered the intricacies of lighting that are ever-present in his photography.

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