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Photographing Modern Architecture

by Photoh (follow)
Blog (345)      Articles (159)     
Architecture photography is a way of documenting the feel and sight of a single building, or a whole community, and is a great way of capturing a city or town's look and personality.

We've covered the architecture photography basics here, which is a great guide on what settings and viewpoints to use when out with your camera.

Many cities' skylines now feature a whole host of striking modern architecture, that rise up and above the more traditional-looking buildings. So how can you capture them in an effective way?

What is visually striking about the building?
Does the architecture encourage you to look upwards, or are there patterns that draw your eye to a certain point in the building? Are there large, open spaces that make you feel small, or an absence of colour or warmth?



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia
All of these photos use the patterns and lines in the building, without including any other distractions. Think about how the vast open areas make you feel - this is emphasised by the lack of colour too.



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia


Although the photos above are quite abstract, they work well because the patterns rip right through the frame and draw your attention across the composition. Don't be afraid to experiment with tight crops and zooming in on to a particular area that catches your eye.

Use negative space
Negative space is a way of composing a photo so that the subject is the only thing within the frame and the space around it is completely empty. Itís almost the opposite concept of filling the frame, however it serves the same purpose of emphasising the subject by using minimalism.

Negative space can help to give a sense of scale, contrast, texture and emotion. You can see the full article on negative space here.



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia
Photographing from a low angle like this gives a sense of scale, and makes the building look as though it's dominating the sky



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia
This photographer has cleverly used the negative space of the sky to make it look as though there's another layer of the building, and it emphasises the horizontal lines and blocks of colour



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia




Find pockets of light
Generally speaking, modern architecture tends to have place focus on light, and how the light acts inside the building. Photography is simply playing with light, so it can be an interesting way to marry architecture and photography together.



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia


Find ways that the architect has placed emphasis on light in the building, and use it to frame a subject or to create interesting contrasts and patterns.



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia



Architecture photography guide settings how to australia


If there's natural light coming through a window, think about how the strength and tones of the light would change throughout the day - what effects could this create?

Symmetry and repetition
Has the architect used symmetry in an area of the building? Look for leading lines that could produce a graphic or abstract feel to the photo. Keep the composition nice and tight so that no unwanted distractions creep into the frame.



modern architecture photography symmetry



modern architecture photography symmetry


Has the architect created a statement with repetition? This sometimes requires you to take a step back and look at the building as a whole.

Modern tower blocks aren't always considered to be 'beautiful' examples of architecture, but they can be really interesting to photograph. Take a look at photographer Andy Yeung's incredibly striking shots of modern tower blocks here.

Don't be scared to turn things on their head
Modern architecture can really push the boundaries, and be daring in comparison to its counterparts, so take this as a chance to be daring too! Explore extreme angles and viewpoints that wouldn't work for other subjects. Perhaps try different lighting or editing techniques that produce tones or effects that you wouldn't normally use.



Photoh Competition Photography Classes Australia



Photoh Competition Photography Classes Australia



Photoh Competition Photography Classes Australia


What is the architecture like in your local area? Share your photos with us on the Facebook groups here.

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