Things to Consider Before Hiring An Architectural Photographer
Architectural photography requires not only the honed skills of a talented photographer, but also the fortuitous alignment of several external factors. While such things as the fickle nature of the inclement British weather and impromptu maintenance works, all of which affect a buildings visual appearance, can’t always be mitigated, some careful planning can lead to achieving the best results from the photography. It is with this in mind that I have provided a brief checklist for clients to consider in preparation for the architectural photography of their project.
Weather & Lighting
Optimum lighting an weather conditions are intrinsic to obtaining the best architectural photographs. I calculate the sun’s position prior to visiting a site, so it is necessary in the brief to identifying the elevations which are most important to capture. The duration of the shoot will, to some degree, be dictated by this, so access to the building should be flexible. Occasionally factors such as the time of year and the encroaching shadows of adjacent buildings may place limits on the light certain elevations receive. For exterior photographs dusk shots may be required to highlight certain aspects of the design, if so please inform me of this.
The photography of interiors can take place on both sunny and cloudy days. Which is more appropriate will depend on the specifics of the space. If the buildings interior needs photographing as well as the exterior it may be necessary to arrange several days photography to cover both aspects. Finally, if having the optimum weather and light conditions are necessary for the client, please factor in the possibility of having to reschedule the shoot and the extra time this will take if there are deadlines for obtaining the images.
Opinions as to whether a building is complete and ready to photograph often depend on who you ask. Contractors may very well have a different opinion to that of an architect. To achieve the best results from the photography all relevant aspects of the building should be in a clean, accessible state with no visual obstructions.
Once a building is complete there can often still be ongoing works at ground level, like landscaping and utility installation. If it is a phased development, surrounding buildings may not be complete with construction work still taking place. All these factors, if not accounted for prior to the shoot can restrict the scope of the images I can take and will impact upon how good the building appears in the photos. Therefore, where possible it would be beneficial to get an up to date report from someone on site before arranging the photography.
Gaining the relevant permission to access the building before my arrival to undertake the photography is essential. Building managers and security staff are often reluctant to allow anyone onto the premises if all are not notified beforehand, this is relevant for both interior and exterior photo shoots.
To ensure the client obtains what it is they desire from the photography, it is important to outline in a brief any special requirements that may need covering. While intuition and experience inform much of how I approach my architectural photography, there maybe specific aspects or details of the space or structure which you want covering that otherwise might be overlooked.
There are a diverse range of clients commissioning my architectural photography services and each have specific requirements. To accommodate this diversity I offer rates tailored to each job, so to receive a quote please outline to the best of your knowledge the project you would like photographing and all the aspect you need covering with the expected quantity of images.