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Landscape Architecture Photographer Tips

Aug 29, 2016 | Architectural Photographers, Architectural Videographers, Commercial Photographer

What you should know about landscape architecture photography is that it’s surprisingly difficult. The beautiful results that you see in print and online look easy. How to get these landscape photographs is not easy. That’s the key to mastery right? I can’t promise you mastery in a simple blog post, but I can offer these great hints on how to get there.

Is the property ready for your landscape architecture photographer?

New plants take time to adjust and look natural. The plants in your wonderful landscaping designs have a schedule of their own. Normally plants are vibrant and full of life 8-10 weeks after planting. Giving some time for the fresh construction look to weather a bit is good too. Prepare the property before the photography too. If all light bulbs are working, debris is cleaned up, and clutter removed it will make the next tip much easier.

Variety of perspectives show your talent and tell a story

Landscape architecture photography is difficult. What is good photographic technique for the architectural structures is often in competition with the landscaping. For example, perfect parallel verticals and wide expansive landscaping. The former is a level camera, and the later is a angles down camera with parallax (converging vertical lines). Use a perspective control (PC) lens is one professional solution. The other is to make photographs from down low, top down, and tight details. Getting good coverage with a variety of visual styles highlights the landscape designers intent and gives the project story some depth.

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Amazing light makes the scene

Meticulous design and attention to detail is highlighted by amazing light. You can have a world class corporate atrium, but if the light is flat your photos will be too. Don’t worry I’m not going to urge you to follow conventional wisdom and say don’t photograph in direct sunlight. I think direct sunlight is great for some landscape architecture photography. Remember the detail photos in the second tip above? What does make for amazing light more consistently is dawn and dusk. Mixing the architectural lighting features with available light during dawn and dusk creates more visual drama (contrast). Plus you’ll have more warm side lighting to work with before and after these times of day.

Use Highest Resolution Possible

I’m repurposing this important tip from an earlier blog post – 5 architecture photography tips – because landscaping has so many fine details. Every leaf, flower, branch, and tile treatment is composed of important details that show off your work. Expansive views encompassing all the elements of your designs make these details extremely small in the frame. The more pixels that define the details in the image the better the photo will look. More megapixels and the best lenses your budget can afford will achieve this goal.

If you are a designer producing landscape architecture photography yourself, or working with a professional photographer, following these tips is invaluable. High-resolution photography that is big and bold sells new contracts, gets published, and wins design awards.

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