Architecture photography is all about making buildings, interiors, and other spaces look their best. Composition is one of the key elements for a successful image, but as you might already know, there are many factors to consider to take your work to a higher level!
Wide-angle lenses are usually the best option for architecture photography. They can capture a vast area in the frame, making it easier to capture tall buildings, open spaces, interiors, etc. Don't leave the normal lens at home! Having a regular lens in your kit can be very helpful when capturing detailed shots.
Always use a steady tripod to shoot architecture to guarantee straight, sharp, and in-focus images. Keep your camera parallel to the subject you are capturing to minimize skewed vertical lines and make your editing work much easier.
It is recommended to use an aperture of f8 or higher to sharpen and focus all elements in the frame.
Keeping your ISO low will help avoid noise in your images.
Your shutter speed will vary depending on the location's lighting, but a good start is 1/125.
Using a tripod with these settings will help you avoid blurry images, camera shake, and other issues that could be impossible to fix in post-production.
When composing your shots, always look for design features, furniture, or props to help you with framing. Leading lines can be useful to guide the viewer's eye to the subject. Make sure to use the camera's back screen to test your composition and move around, look for the perfect spot!
When shooting interiors, make sure all elements in the frame are nicely styled and tidy. Keep an eye on furniture, cables, or any other detail that could be distracting.
We recommend setting your tripod at a consistent height; 5 feet is a good height to start. A good trick to help you figure out the correct height when shooting interiors is that you should be able to see the surfaces of tables.
When shooting exteriors, scout the location before your shoot date at the same time you are planning to shoot.
Check all possible angles and pay attention to the light! Early morning and late afternoon are usually ideal times to shoot exteriors because, at these times, the sun provides great lighting that creates long shadows and beautiful light.
Don't forget to check the weather and adjust your shooting time as necessary. Sometimes our clients might require you to shoot at a specific time - always check the creative spec for important details like this.
Natural light is always your best option when shooting interiors. Turn off all the lights in the room as they can create unwanted shadows and different light temperatures.
Always use a tripod - it will be extremely useful when you have to shoot with slow shutter speeds.
If the location is very dark, you might have to rely on overhead lighting, lamps, and your lighting to fill in dark areas. Your lighting should always be controlled, subtle and natural, so make sure to use modifiers to soften harsh lighting.
Be mindful of differences in color in a room lit by overhead lights and lamps. You will find that not every bulb has the same color temperature.
In certain situations, you might have to take two exposures, one for the interiors and another for the exterior (windows), and combine the two in post.
Shoot raw as it will provide you with a better file to work with, and you will be able to restore information from dark areas, shadows, and bright or overexposed spots.
The first thing you want to fix is barrel distortion, which is caused by almost all lenses, especially wide-angle ones. Photoshop, Lightroom, Capture One, and many other photo-editing software have the option to remove lens distortion. Make sure you select the same lens you used while shooting, and the software will do all the work!
The next important editing step is to make sure all vertical lines in your images are straight. This can be done in Lightroom under the Transform tab or in Photoshop, using the Camera Raw filter, under Geometry.
The automatic fix usually does a good job but if the results are not great, use the manual option. Find areas in the photo where you know the lines are straight - this can be a corner, doorframe, or window. The further apart they are in the frame, the better. Use the "draw lines" option to tell the software what a straight line should be. Make sure to select two points in order for this to work. Sometimes while doing this process, your image will get cropped in, so be aware of your frame while shooting and composing your shots. Always think ahead!