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Architectural Photography: Exteriors

with Richard Klein

Video: Intro to shooting exteriors

Follow along with photographer Richard Klein as he demonstrates the best shooting and lighting techniques for photographing buildings.
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Architectural Photography: Exteriors
Video Duration: 0s 28m 58s Intermediate


View Course Description

An effective photo of a building captures the personality of the architecture and its designer's vision. In this course, photographer Richard Klein demonstrates key techniques for taking exterior photos that make a building look its best. He visits two sites, one featuring a large modern home and the other a Japanese-style building, and covers a variety of lighting techniques, from working with existing light to employing supplemental lighting.


Intro to shooting exteriors

My name is Richard Klein. I'm an architectural photographer, and I've been fortunate enough to have assignments all around the world photographing architecture. When I'm photographing exteriors what I really love to do is have a conversation in my mind with the architect or the designer. I want to see what was really important to them. What did they commit to in the style and the design of their building? In addition then I'm looking to check the context.

Where is this building? Does it fit in harmoniously? Does it not fit in, does it fight, does it stand on its own with the rest of its surroundings? And I keep all that in mind when I'm deciding what I'm going to do. So in this course, you'll come along with me while I photograph two very different locations. We're going to be doing the exteriors of a house that is very intimate, small, in the Japanese-style, with an incredibly manicured garden surrounding the house, and the details of the garden will be very important for the house.

And the second house, we're going to be looking at a midcentury modern sitting on a bluff, overlooking the ocean, with cliffs dropping down, that has landscaping but not as manicured as our first house. I'll be shooting with a Mamiya medium format with a leaf back tethered to a computer, but everything that I do is completely applicable to shooting with a DSLR, tethered or not. Software is available for tethering your DSLR if you want to do it that way.

I'm going be shooting in raw so there will be postprocessing involved with every image. I'm not going to go through the post with you, but I will be describing what I'll be doing in the post and I'll show you the final composited images together. I'm really excited about this, so let's get started. Let's start with our Japanese-style house.

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