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Building Photography

"How and When?"

Question from Kantha about building photography -

I have a SLR D5000 and want to take a few photos of a building from outside the front.

I wanted to know just when to take photo of it. The building is facing west and is opposite to a park which thereby hampers me from moving far
away from the building. The building is also 4 floors high, having a few reflective windows.

I request you to suggest me the timing and angle of shooting.

Thanking you.

Answer -

Hi Kantha,

This sounds like a situation where you will need to use your widest angle lens. If you are not able to move very far away from the building and you have to stand at street level then you will notice that the photos you take will look as though the building is falling backwards.

This situation is known as "Converging Verticles" - a condition that can easily be fixed using your imaging software. There's a tutorial about this in the Photo Editing section.

As to the time of day to take the photograph - there is no "right" time. What does matter is the light. As with all photographs, this is the most significant factor and it is entirely up to you how you want your photograph to look.

If you chose an overcast day, there will be no harsh shadows giving a more even lighting across the building and its surroundings.

If you chose a sunny day there will be more contrast and then you need to consider whether you want the "bluer" light of the day of the "redder" light of the evening. In your situation, you then have the choice of whether to expose for the brickwork, or whatever material the building is made from, or for the reflections from the windows which will give the building more of a silhouette effect.

There are plenty of examples on how to use light on this website in the "Photography Techniques" section and in the tutorials and masterclasses on landscape photography.

Enjoy your building photography,

Building Photography


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