Not all architectural photographers are created equal nor are the techniques we use to create images equivalent. When I work for architectural clients, whether it’s an architecture firm, interior designer, engineering firm, or others, details matter.
Key differentiators are the way scenes are staged and how they are edited.
Staging a scene by paying attention to details adds immeasurably to the quality of a final image. In creating the school commons/cafeteria image, time was taken to line up the tables and chairs, remove extraneous pieces, and make sure the area was clean. Having the project interior designer on hand was a big plus.
Creating the twilight shot was an exercise in logistics. Knowing the lights might be turned off or go off automatically required specific arrangements earlier in the day. Contact was established with one of the school’s custodians. Phone calls to a cooperative custodian helped get the interior lights on and keep them on so we could create this image.
The final stages of post processing involves examining each image for distracting elements. In this particular case, we knew numerous pieces of paper taped to the walls of this classroom were going to be a problem. Their distracting presence was even more obvious after we shot the photo. Moreover, writing on the white boards and their soiled condition was also a problem. Using the Content Aware tool in Photoshop and selecting the white boards for color fill made a big difference. Finally, we removed spots on the tables and material on the carpet in the far right corner of the image.
Various distracting elements were visible in the original exterior photo of this school. The most obvious was a street sign right in the middle of the image. We removed it along with a variety of small distracting elements. Including: shadows across the asphalt and concrete, stains on the concrete, missing grass, and items on the building’s face.
Details matter. Whether it’s taking the time and effort to stage a scene prior to shooting or taking the time to carefully edit the image in post processing, there is definitely a difference between an average photo and one that’s remarkable!