Making Photos vs Taking Photos: Tone Enhancing to Create a Dynamic Architectural Image
Because architecture project photography is often driven by many factors, it can be difficult to schedule architectural photography on the perfect day at the perfect time with perfect weather conditions. When this happens, we will use post production techniques to convert a "blah" photo into a dynamic architectural photo.
It was cloudy and raining during our travel to this project in the Twin Cities Metro area. Although the rain had subsided by the time we arrived, it remained cloudy and threatening. Rather than postpone the shoot, we went ahead and took photos of the exterior of the building.
The base image, above, properly exposed for the building, left a gray and featureless sky. As a Minnesota photographer who shoots a lot of commercial architecture and residential architecture, I use HDR techniques frequently to add luminosity.
Although we could have created a final image with lots of great contrast and some interesting sky and clouds, out best judgment told us the client would want a brighter, prettier, final image. In post production, we used some advanced editing techniques to add a new sky. The final result stands in sharp contrast to any of the alternatives.
Many photographers fail to use techniques like this to make photos. For budget reasons or because their own skill set is not as advanced, they'll submit unedited or poorly edited images to their clients. It's much more than being able to "snap" a photo.
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