Photographing Brand New Architecture or Older Existing Architecture
It is important to know when to hire a photographer to shoot your architecture and what to look for in a professional architecture photographer. We have found that the absolute best time to have architecture photography of a building project shot is when the building is fresh and new. Arranging the architecture shoot shortly after opening, or even a day or two before a commercial building is occupied will get the best results without disturbing the occupants. In addition, the architect, builder, and owner will still have fresh relationships and are more likely to be accommodating. Advance coordination with those in charge enables the best photography and keeps disruption to a minimum.
The Best Season for Architecture Photography
Spring Is THE best season to get outstanding Architecture Photography in California. The hills are green and the skies are clear during the wetter spring months. Subsequently, June gloom is a real thing and is just around the corner. June is also the beginning of design competitions. Therefore, to win competitions you have to have first-class photography shot at the right time. It’s important to schedule building photography early in the year so that coordination between all parties can happen well before the California heat turns the grass brown.
Magazine Quality Architecture Photography – Don’t Settle for Less
Magazine quality Architectural Photography should be the end goal. You can use photography of your building project for contests, advertising, websites, and to draw in new clients. The absolute best quality is what you want for the money you will spend.
When Seeking a Photographer for Architectural Photography Consider These Questions:
Business and Photography Skills
- How long have they been in business? The longevity of the business can give you an indication of skill and stability. New doesn’t mean better and old doesn’t mean outdated when it comes to photographers. Consequently, being in business for more than 15 years shows that they actually know what they are doing.
- How were they trained? A well trained, photographer understands composition, lighting, shadow details, color balance, leading lines, and so much more. Whereas, the guy that is doing this as a hobby or is just starting out will be learning on your dime, may take longer, and not produce as well.
- What kind of photography is in their portfolio? Don’t hire a baby photographer to shoot your building, unless they have architectural photography in their portfolio that you like. It is a completely different skill set.
- Can they shoot interior photography? Building interiors take skills similar to exterior photography, yet it is different and more refined. Interior photography takes special lighting equipment and advanced knowledge of how to light a room well. A photographer will also need a good sense of style. Rearranging a room to style the shot is not uncommon. In addition, the photographer may be required to work extremely fast, as not to tie up an area too long. Speed comes with experience.
Job Site Security
- Do they have construction site experience? This may not seem important if your building is complete. However, a seasoned architectural photographer will have years of moving through construction sites. They will be able to follow safety protocols without upsetting workers or the foremen. Simultaneously, this skill transfers to photographing completed buildings with security guidelines. Working well with people in charge of building security goes a long way.
- Is the photographer insured? Liability insurance for a photographer is a must. Things happen and any photographer that performs work on your property should be insured. It is acceptable to ask this upfront.
Drone Photography for Architecture
- Do I want architectural drone photography or video as well? That will depend on what you are trying to show with. If you need to show location and size, drone photography is a great way to do that. If you need a video spot for a presentation, drone photography is also the way to go.
- Do they have a Drone Pilot License from the FAA? A drone photographer/pilot MUST have a license from the FAA if they are going to charge a fee for photography. That’s the law! Consequently, licensing takes another level of education and commitment from the photographer. Licensing assures that they know what they are doing as they fly over your building, people, and qualified air space. Make sure they are licensed.
About Studio 101 West Photography
Architectural Photography has been our primary focus for over three decades. It’s a technical craft that has changed a great deal over the years. We use the latest tools alongside our established skills to make each project look its best both inside and out. Contact us for a free estimate or to see when we can schedule your project. www.Studio101West.com