Travel Photography Tips I : Capturing Architecture

What sights do you see when you are out holidaying with your family or away on business trip? There may be gorgeous landscapes from a faraway land, smiling faces that greet you or a delicious spread of food that is laid out in front of you. But whether you are lounging by a beach in the Andaman or trekking to a mountain village in the Alps, one feature that is omnipresent is architecture. It could be a majestic monument, a fearsome fortress, a sculpted cathedral or just a humble countryside cottage – when one travels, architecture is all around us. When it comes to photographing architecture, here are some tips and techniques for getting the best results:

Align your axes

The number one thumb-rule when it comes to shooting architecture is to align the camera’s frame to the horizontal axis, or to put it simply, to the horizon. This makes photos seem balanced and avoids having buildings that seem to fall on one side. If shooting a relatively shorter structure from a distance, then it might also be additionally possible to keep the vertical axis perfectly straight.

Step back and open wide

No matter what camera you shoot with, try to step as back from the building as possible. The idea is to first capture its entire width within the frame, so as to let the photograph showcase the overall feel of the building. If shooting with a dSLR camera then also open your focal length to be as wide as possible. Between 15mm to 24mm works well for most buildings. Fish eye lenses can capture an even wider frame and provide interesting compositional opportunities.

Look out for forms and patterns

When visiting larger than life structures, it is quite easy to be overwhelmed by their scale and their setting. While appreciating the magnificence, do not forget to pause and look out for smaller details. Architecture has an inherent language made up of forms, elements, patterns and colours. For example, when visiting places in Pune, one is bound to visit the magnificent Shaniwar Wada and be amazed by its sturdy structures and beautiful gardens. But look closely, and one can observe a wonderful play of lines and materials within its confines – such as this photo of a flight of steps leading up to the Wada’s walls.

Give it a human scale

Lastly, architecture is all about creating spaces for humans to thrive in. And though many purists prefer architectural photography to be devoid of all human beings, strategically capturing a person within the frame can immediately make a photograph more relatable and the architecture more inviting. Either wait for a bystander to walk past you or ask a friend to stand within the frame.

Fact File:

Pune is a treasure trove of architecturally-interesting spots that include palaces, forts and museums. These monuments provide great opportunities for architectural photography and can be easily reached from The Central Park Hotel which is a conveniently located hotel near Pune railway station. The hotel offers a choice of suites in Pune along with a wide range of amenities and dining options.
Credits: Image

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