Planning Architectural Photography

September 10, 2021

Have you ever looked at building pictures and felt amazed? Do you get this feeling of ecstasy due to the marvelous image the photographer has created? Well, that is the right feeling!

Architectural Photography displays captivating images of buildings or structures around the globe. In this article, you will learn about what architectural photography entails.

What is Architectural Photography?

Architectural Photography, also known as building or structure photography, deals with photographs of man-made architectures. That is, this aspect of photography focuses on buildings, bridges, cityscapes, or other architectural designs. For centuries, this aspect of architectural photography has been capturing different momentum architectural styles. From Romanesque to Classic, gothic to baroque, several architectural photographs have unveiled that the type of photography is arguably the oldest. Today, several captivating photos have been taken to unveil some exquisite buildings across the globe.

Interiors and Architectural Photographers have been taking amazing photos of many high end buildings with complex geometry and detailed finishes. There are many new buildings with unique design elements that have proliferated the skyline the last few years. During boom construction times you will see 50 or more construction cranes around your city. That is the time to start marketing to your local design agencies for photo shoots.

Types of Architectural Photography

There are two main types of architectural photography. They are:

Exterior Photography

As its name implies, this type of photography deals with the outward look of a structure. It captures the shot from the outside while displaying its fascinating look. It benefits from natural lights and can be captured through various photographic elements. Depending on the weather condition, exterior photography can produce a dramatic effect ranging from a moody look to a pleasant look.

Interior Photography

Interior photography refers to the inward looks of a structure. It deals with the photographs that capture the interior design of a particular building. Although this type is more challenging due to space and other elements, it still creates a positive ambiance. With the supplementary lighting of the structure, the photographer can take captivating shots that achieve an aesthetic style.

Architectural Photography Equipment

For you to produce an architectural shot, then you must have some gears in place. These gears enable you to take enthralling shots in the architectural photography world. Some of this equipment includes:


Your camera influences the result of architectural shots. After all, selecting the right camera is a critical decision on a general note. For architectural photography, you can select a DSLR to produce a high-quality image. A DSLR camera has been the trend for years as it gives you control and offers you different modes which can be utilized in capturing the shot. Before utilizing it, ensure that the camera has at least ten megapixels to deliver your desired result.


A camera without a functioning lens is technically useless. As a photographer, it is best advised to have varieties of these lenses to propel you in the photography type. By having prime lenses, you can produce sharp images without any distortions. Meanwhile, zoom lenses allow you to capture shots within a close view and highlight some hidden and significant features of the structure.

Besides, there is the tilt-shift lens that is popular for this photography type. It allows you to adjust the angle of your camera without much problem. With this, you can avoid some basic distortion during the process. Also, you can create some miniaturization effect that adds more ambiance to your shots.

Finally, there are wide-angle lenses that are also suitable for architectural photography. It tries to fit a huge structure in any frame. However, this type comes with some distortion issues that can affect the outcome of the image. Nonetheless, these errors can be fixed through some software tools.


For stability and consistency, you will need a tripod. Tripods allow you to take photos without shaking the camera, minimizing blurs, and creating balance. You can't take perfect shots without this tool. It's essential. It allows you to tilt your lens to different angles while maintaining the lateral view of the subject.


For interior photography, you may need flash to enhance the lighting. Flash acts as supplementary lighting when taking captivating shots. They illuminate the environment and make the photos more appealing to the sight. Hence, you can equip your camera with a flash attachment to brighten the environment. Besides, lighting kits such as speed lights and bounces are effective for artificial lighting.

Tips to Consider when Taking Shots in Architectural Photography

Take Multiple Shots on varying Weather Conditions

Weather conditions determine how lovely your pictures will become. In this scenario, you can't just shoot once and be comfortable with it. No, it doesn't work that way. As a photographer, you are best advised to take as many shots on carting weather conditions. That implies that the rising sun, cloudy atmosphere, rainy day, or windy atmosphere setting sun doesn't matter. All you have to do is to take shots at different times of the day to paint unique and illustrative stories about the structures around you.

Adequate Lighting

Lighting is paramount to any aspect of photography. Hence, you are to consider the lighting of the environment before taking the shot. For exterior architecture, the natural light is there for you. However, avoid direct sunlight to eliminate shadows or illuminate harshly on the buildings.

Meanwhile, for interior architecture, you can utilize artificial lighting within the building. If the lighting is not enough to achieve your desired result, you may consider taking your lighting kits to the venue. Lighting kits such as flash, speed light, and more can enhance the illumination of the surroundings.

Select the Right Angle

Yes. Angles are important. Although you can have everything ready, the angle can fail the shots you take. Here, consider the angle you utilize structure. For instance, you may need an eye-level angle for taking street pictures. Meanwhile, you could need a high-level angle to capture a tower. The angle you select for taking your shots is essential as it makes or mars your photography skill.

Include People

In architectural photography, including people is a suitable option. Although humans are not buildings or structures, their humanitarian efforts should not be undermined. Hence, you can include people to make the picture more realistic and fascinating.


Architectural Photography is the process of taking pictures relating to buildings. Hence, it is important to understand what it entails and have deep knowledge about it before engaging fully in it. With practice and preparation, good equipment and some knowledge you too can take captivating photos of buildings in your local city.


Orlando Sydney
Sydney photographer Orlando Sydney is based right on the city hub close to all the events and amazing new corporate spaces. He has been in the Sydney creative hub for over a decade serving the local community.

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