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How to take photos of architecture

October 1 is World Architecture Day! Architecture photography is a window into the world of history and design. Buildings come in all shapes and sizes, and photographing them can be a way to see things from a unique perspective.


Here are my top tips for taking great photos of the beautiful and interesting buildings you see.


Take a step back

Putting distance between the building and your camera can help you capture the entire building.


2. taj-mahal-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of the exterior of the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. (Local Guide Manoj Kashyap)

Look for unique angles

Try a variety of different angles. Shooting from below can make the building look larger, while shooting from above can show depth and draw attention to interesting shapes.


1. Solomon-R.-Guggenheim-Museum-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of the interior of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum taken from a view from above in New York, New York, USA. (Local Guide Matt Moore)

Use natural light

Turn off your flash when indoors and photograph in natural light to avoid harsh shadows. Look for the soft light that comes through a building’s windows to illuminate the scene.


3. ribbon-chapel-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of the interior of the The Ribbon Chapel. Hiroshima, Japan. (Local Guide Ken Lee)

Look for lines

Shooting on a diagonal can add depth and dimension to your image. Shooting straight on can give the image a sense of balance and calmness.


4. sao-paulo-museum-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of staircases and interior of the São Paulo Museum of Art, São Paulo Brazil. (Local Guide Rei Bollozos)

Turn on your camera grid

Use your grid to keep vertical lines vertical, and perpendicular to the horizon. If your camera’s grid is tilted to the side, a building can look like it’s falling over in your images. A grid can be useful while shooting any type of scene, not only architecture. 


5. GI-bordeaux-castle-1000.pngCaption: A photo of the exterior of a French chateau with a grid overlay showing two horizontal and two vertical lines. (Getty Images)

Include people to show size

A great way to show the size of a building or architectural elements, is to include a person or people in the scene. Adding a person or a group of people with the building will add scale to the scene and can make your photo more dynamic.  


6. architecture-include-people-1000.jpgCaption: A photo of the exterior of Las Setas De Sevilla with people walking. (Local Guide Koen Bouman)

Do you love architecture? Share your photos of buildings that you find unique in their design, and tell everyone in the comments: What can other Local Guides do to help you learn more about architecture?




LucioV Level 10
Level 10

Re: How to take photos of architecture

Great tips!

I've worked for some architecture firms, mainly for interiors, and I love to add moving people in the frame.

Another great tip is to use ND filters (Neutral density) to use more time (up to hours); this will wipe out moving people and cars from the frame, that will become phantoms.


Schermata 2017-05-03 alle 12.16.12.pngPonte della musica - Roma

One thing I've noticed is that architects don't like 360, because leave the watcher free to choose the view angle; they want to show the place with a specific view angle.


20140524_114809_HDR.jpgCentrale MontemartiniSchermata 2017-03-17 alle 18.51.24.pngPalazzo della Civiltà e del Lavoro21006703240_1262d6f193_k.jpgMessner Mountain Museum21008572499_6532baf0b5_k.jpgMessner Mountain Museum8970171572_c17e434a9e_k.jpgFlatiron

MahabubMunna Level 9
Level 9

Re: How to take photos of architecture

my few photo collectionIMG_20150912_195006.jpgNirjhor


TipuS7.jpgFirst floor corner view








SP31 Level 9
Level 9

Re: How to take photos of architecture

Some amazing tips here - I'm always looking for the lines and angles but I've never thought to use the grid in my app. I usually try to use my vision to tell whether its level but it makes much more sense to use the guiding grid if I'm not trying to shoot something too quickly. Thanks, @Christina-NYC!

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Srujanaadhumulla Level 6
Level 6

Re: How to take photos of architecture

Thank you christina for the information.

Sedrik Level 1
Level 1

Re: How to take photos of architecture

Ohh .. very nice♡..♡

AnuradhaP Level 9
Level 9

Re: How to take photos of architecture

@Christina-NYC This is a photo I took.


Nick-Hobgood Level 8
Level 8

Re: How to take photos of architecture

Thanks @Christina-NYC for the awesome tips!  For 360 photos, remember to pick your vantage point with the most strategic view of the architecture. For the Roman ruins in Baalbek, Lebanon the best place is where you can see examples of the architecture at any angle in the image.  This temple of Bacchus offered a great view all the way around. 


Sedrik Level 1
Level 1

Re: How to take photos of architecture


😍 منم‌میخوام

Sedrik Level 1
Level 1

Re: How to take photos of architecture

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