Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Feb 03 2015
Article by: Tampa Architectural Photographer Brian Swartzwelder
Project Location: Washington, DC

The drawbacks for DIY photographers ‘shooting’ their own new home construction projects are as varied as the materials that go into the building of their homes.

But contractor’s should push back on that urge to ‘shoot’ their newly finished homes, even though they may have the latest in camera gear and hundreds of shots under their belt.

But, one can’t begrudge the DIY spirit, or the photographs that, in the builder’s estimation, are good enough. Let’s face it, though, in a competitive market like new home construction, is good enough really going to cut it? Will the builder’s reputation suffer because his photo gallery fails to capture the home’s salient features?

Often, it’s those little things that the architectural photographer uses instinctually, like not shooting every room “straight on,” or taking the time to set up each and every shot with the best use of ambient and flash lighting.

As such, taking the time to walk through the rooms---and the outside landscape---provides the architectural photographer the chance to ‘frame’ the shots. Taking the time to study the strength of each room helps the photographer decide on which angles to shoot from.

The novice photographer may or may not know the importance of “bracketing,” or using a range of exposures; this helps in the post-production work in deciding which shots are the most remarkable...and marketable.

Contact us. Discover how we can help move your commercial construction project, or residential home, into the realm of showcase properties through on-site, or aerial, photography.

Jan 01 2015
Article by: Tampa Architectural Photographer Brian Swartzwelder
Project Location: Lithia, Florida

Successful builders usually are savvy about the time-is-money concept, and will not try to take on the marketing of their model home.

Still, they may be drawn to the idea of photographing their Builder Model Homes themselves because, after all, who else knows their home better than the hands who built it?

Granted, because they are successful builders, they often have the advantage of being able to buy the latest camera gear, thinking the equipment alone will do the job.

Mistakenly, they often go about the task by ‘shooting blindly’ from room-to-room and upstairs and outside. The fault in this strategy is multi-layered because there are so many elements comprising a successful shoot.

For instance, during certain times of the day the use of natural lighting may give that “Wow!” factor necessary to enhance key elements of the home, including the outside landscaping.

Instead, builder-photographers may not give much thought to ‘lighting.’ Instead, they rely on their new tablet, or photo app, to salvage their photos.

What’s needed in today’s competitive builder’s market is a proven architectural photographer who weaves lighting, composition and framing of each shot seamlessly; this, in such a way to leave the right photographic impression, thereby relieving the builder of time wasted away from what he does best: build quality-crafted homes.

The process often starts with the builder and the photographer sitting down to discuss the finished home. This might include looking at the plans before going to the site, or asking the builder what his philosophy is when it comes to each aspect of the construction.

Only then, can the true vision of the project come together in the photographer’s mind, allowing him to use his tools, from lenses to lighting, to deliver that vision.

Contact us. Discover why our clients recommend us, and how you’ll benefit from having truly engaging photographs, for website galleries or virtual tours.

Dec 23 2014
Article by: Tampa Architectural Photographer Brian Swartzwelder
Project : Southern Crafted Homes

Photographing new home construction is not a linear process of simply arriving at the site, taking photos inside-and-out and picking a few good ones for the contractor’s brochure or website.

It’s more than that, may sometimes start with sitting down with the architect of the home(s). In such instances the architectural photographer stands the chance of moving the final product to a higher level of professionalism.

Getting ‘inside the head’ of the designer of the home can be very informative by hearing how design problems were solved, and what made them decide to design the way they did.


 Walking around the project

It’s always important to know what the character of the natural light is throughout the site, and how it enhances prominent structural features inside-and-out.

What kind of effect do the shadows provide at certain hours of the day, and will they play a role in the final composition decisions?


Always, the photographer’s eye is assessing the best vantage points for the shoot. The objects he works with are defined by their shapes and how they occupy their space.

What’s the ‘point of view?’

Sometimes, the space may have to be ‘staged’ with a few people to help emphasize the space in it’s final format: brochure, website or virtual tour, for example.

The final shots.

We’ve all seen the effects of too much tweaking of a photo, be it the colors that appear saturated, or the heightened contrast.

There’s a difference between editing a photo to eliminate a formatting problem within the composition and added special effects---unless the client calls for it, of course.

Contact us to learn more. We work with developers, and residential builders, to bring the right “Wow!” factor to their projects.

Dec 17 2014
Article by: Tampa Architectural Photographer Brian Swartzwelder
Project Location: Tampa,Fl
What makes great architecture? A simple answer to this question is a photographer's ability to give buildings a story. It takes a regular building, freezes it in time, and though it is frozen, gives it life by capturing it from an interesting perspective. This being said, here are the elements of great architectural photography you don't want to miss. 

In Great Architectural Photography, the Direction of Light Is Clear

Great architectural photography follows the direction of light, properly accentuating shadows, textures, and contrast in all the right places. With the right lighting, photos of your building will have well-distributed exposure from every corner.

Great Architectural Photography  Makes Use of the Wide-Angle Lens 

A wide-angle lens isn't necessary for every great photo of a building, though its width makes it ideal for framing entire buildings and, thus, entire scenes. 

Great Architectural Photography Consists of Beautiful, Converging Lines

A beautiful photo of a building always consists of converging lines. The more vertical the lines are, the better. In addition, the more distance there is between a photographer and the building, the more likely the photographer is to capture the long lines of the building.

Great Architectural Photography Has No Camera Shake

Light and motion should be still. There should be no camera shake or excessive noise. Great architectural photography is sharp and, consequently, captures your building as it truly looks in real life – just like it deserves to be. 

Want to learn more about the elements of great architectural photography? If so, feel free visit our website and/or contact us with questions.