Tips for Capturing Extraordinary Architectural Photos

Tips for Capturing Extraordinary Architectural Photos

As the year 2024 approaches, the concept of architecture is based on sustainability, flexibility, and quality of life, and here are some photos of current buildings. These pictures illustrate environmentally friendly concepts and designs that can adapt to provide better health and comfort – like green roofs and walls, modular structures, or sufficient natural lighting – as part of the designers’ commitment to the environment and the well-being of people. 

By showing these innovative approaches, architecture photography inspires and educates on their role in crafting healthier futures with thoughtful design solutions.

What Are The Trends In Architectural Photography?

Recently, architectural photography has witnessed several prominent trends:

Human Interaction 

There has been an emerging trend toward including people in architectural photographs to convey scale, functionality, and human connections within built environments.

Minimalism and Clean Lines

Many photographers opt for minimalist compositions, highlighting clean lines, geometric forms, and simplicity to showcase architectural forms’ beauty.

Creative Use of Light

Architectural photographers utilize natural and artificial light sources to craft dramatic effects, emphasize textures, and evoke emotions in their photographs.

Focus on Details

Images highlighting architectural details, textures, and materials have become increasingly popular. These stunning shots allow viewers to appreciate a building’s intricacies better.

Drone Photography

Drones have revolutionized architectural photography, providing photographers with new ways to capture breathtaking aerial views and unique angles of buildings and cityscapes.

Incorporation of Nature

Photos often depict buildings seamlessly integrated with nature through green spaces, biophilic design elements, or buildings that blend harmoniously with their environment.

12 Architectural Photography Tips To Capture The Magnificence Of Man-Made Structures Around The World

Some photographers focus on shooting sustainable architectural designs and their associated features, such as green roofs, solar panels, and energy-efficient materials, in some buildings, such as the Bullitt Centre in Seattle or the Edge in Amsterdam. These examples help promote the recognition of the need to incorporate green construction methods.

Here are 14 architectural photography tips to help you capture the splendour of manmade structures around the world:

Explore About Building

Before venturing out, research the architecture you intend to shoot. Understand its history, significance, and critical features so they can inform your compositions.

Time of Day Matters

Pay Attention to Light. Early morning and late afternoon are typically best for taking advantage of natural lighting to capture architectural details and textures of buildings.

Explore Angles

Don’t confine yourself to shooting from eye level. Instead, embrace the freedom to experiment with shooting from different angles. Try low angles to emphasize height, high angles for an overview, and unique perspectives to highlight interesting details. This creative exploration can lead to unique and captivating compositions.

Use Leading Lines

Search for linear elements in the environment like those that define architecture, for instance the edges of a building or the lines made by its windows, that will lead the eye directly to your focal point. These are referred to as ‘Leading Lines’ and they can help to create direction and more depth in the image.

Include People

Integrating people into your photos can provide scale and context while giving the image life and creating a narrative in its own right.

Frame Within a Frame

Use the architecture or nearby structures as a frame for your subject, adding layers and visual appeal to your composition.

Zoom In On Details

Pay close attention to every last detail – intricate patterns, textures, or architectural features of the building – that showcases its craftsmanship or unique characteristics.

Experiment With Symmetry and Patterns

Symmetry and patterns can produce visually striking compositions. Look for symmetrical buildings or elements repeating themselves to create dynamic yet balanced images.


One should include reflections in their architectural photos by using objects such as glass walls, water bodies, or shiny floors to create an appealing image depth.

Keep It Clean

Be mindful of any clutter or distractions in your frame, such as construction equipment or people walking by, to keep the focus on the architecture itself. By creating clean compositions with no excess materials or debris, your images should remain the star.

Weather Conditions Take Advantage

To add atmosphere and drama to your photographs, embrace changing weather conditions for added dimension. Cloudy skies create soft, diffused lighting, while rain or fog can add atmosphere and texture.

Experiment With Long Exposures

Extended exposure techniques are beneficial when you want to take a picture of something that is not still, for example, clouds or automobiles, against a building or any other structure that does not move.

What Are The Best Camera Settings For Architectural Photography?

The optimal camera settings for architectural photography will depend upon both your circumstances and creative goals, but here are a few general recommendations to get you underway:


For wide-angle views of buildings, using a narrow aperture such as f/8 to f/16 will help ensure that all aspects of the scene remain sharply focused in focus from foreground to background. This is particularly essential when shooting wide-angle images of them.


To avoid noise and ensure image quality, try keeping the ISO as low as possible – typically ISO 100 or lower) when shooting in well-lit environments.

Shutter Speed

For maximum clarity when photographing low-light or narrow aperture lenses, longer shutter speeds should be employed to maintain sharpness in low-light situations and narrow aperture settings. Adjust your shutter speed to freeze or create motion blur effects when taking moving subjects like people or traffic images.

White Balance

Select an appropriate white balance setting based on lighting conditions to ensure accurate color reproduction. Auto white balance or manually adjusting it based on the type of lighting present (e.g., daylight, cloudy, or tungsten lighting) can help achieve accurate reproduction.

Metering Mode

For scenes with strong contrast, consider employing the evaluative or matrix metering mode for optimal exposure across the entire frame. This will ensure balanced exposure across each image in the frame and even exposure across each shot.


Manual focus or selecting one autofocus point are ideal options for precise architectural elements to ensure proper focus. When shooting with narrow aperture settings, use live view mode and zoom in for accuracy when testing focus accuracy.

File Format

When shooting RAW images, use this file format to maximize image information retention and post-processing flexibility for exposure, color, and white balance adjustments.

Lens Selection

When photographing buildings with expansive views and emphasizing scale and grandeur, select a wide-angle lens (16-35mm for full-frame cameras) for best results. However, be wary of distortion at wider focal lengths; correct any that arise post-processing as necessary.


Exposed bracketing can ensure optimal exposure throughout a frame by taking multiple photographs at different exposure levels and merging them in post-processing to achieve uniform exposure.

Gridlines and Composition

Utilizing gridlines on your camera’s viewfinder or display can assist in maintaining straight horizons and vertical lines for a well-composed architectural photograph.


How do you take pictures of high buildings?

For best results when photographing tall buildings, use a wide-angle lens and position yourself to include as much structure as possible in the frame.

What is the best ISO for architecture?

Architecture photography usually benefits from using ISO 100 to 400 settings to maintain image quality and reduce noise in well-lit conditions.

What is the best angle for architectural photography?

Architectural photography often benefits from shooting at an angle to showcase a building’s symmetry and grandeur, but exploring alternative perspectives can add visual interest and add visual impact.

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