survey pictures play an important role in the Navy. The
Naval Investigative Service (NIS) may need pictures of
a building to point out weaknesses in physical security.
The fire department uses pictures of the station theater
to train the fire fighters in evacuation measures. And the
safety officer certainly needs good pictures to show the
extent of damage or existing hazardous conditions to
buildings or personnel.
sitter to smile and pose, and with still life you can alter
the arrangement. You cannot do either of these with a
building. The main controls you have over the picture
are the viewpoint and the lighting.
consideration. Which sides of the building are lighted
and at what time of day? Where are the shadows cast?
lighting at a site is often studied long before the first
becomes a deciding factor in determining the character
of the building.
lighting" is often preferable for perfect reproduction of
materials; that is, light from a slightly overcast sky. This
the highlights and shadows. A building as a whole is
often depicted better in direct, angled sunlight from a
cloudless sky. Filters are used to control the contrast
between subject and sky. Direct sunlight often produces
sometimes be preferable as an illustrative effect. The
light in cloudy weather is the worst kind of lighting for
architectural photography. Try to avoid making pictures
of a building in cloudy weather. The direction of the light
on sunny or slightly overcast days governs the form of
out its characteristic features. Since the position of the
sun in relation to the building constantly changes, there
is only one way to determine the best lighting-study the
building at different times of the day. Only then is it
really possible to identify the best lighting for the
building. Moreover, you should be prepared to study the
lighting from different angles. Do not be content with
your first camera angle. You should always check to see
whether there is a better angle.
forceful re-creation of materials and shapes (fig. 6-21).
distracting landscape or unrelated building that must be
concealed? What is the best camera position for making
this particular picture ? Can I get far enough away to
present an undistorted image? Should I have a ladder to
stand on or can I make this picture from on top of another
building or must I arrange with public works for a bucket
truck? What number of viewpoints are required? What
focal-length lens is best for each view?
is pointing horizontally, you often find there is too much
uninteresting foreground included in the picture, and
you may be "chopping" the top of the building off. So,
tip the camera back to eliminate most of that foreground
and get the top of the building back into the picture.
Now, look what has happened-the vertical lines are
converging; they are no longer parallel; they are sloping
in at the top of the picture. The picture is distorted. A
good architectural photographer does not produce such
a picture. Instead, he uses a view camera and does it
Basic Photography Course