Sebastian Weiss Traces Architectural Lines and Shapes Around Europe

All photos by Sebastian Weiss. Used with Creative Commons permission.

Above: Pavilion of Portugal
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Architect: Alvaro Siza Vieira

It’s been a while since we last marveled at the architectural photography of Hamburg-based Sebastian Weiss, particularly his unique “personality” driven series Dramatis Personae. His attention to detail extends into other projects, such as his explorations of shapes and lines in the architecture of some well-known European cities. If you’re an aspiring architectural photographer looking for projects to study, you will find this body of work impressive and inspiring.

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Carsten Witte Deconstructs Frankfurt in Dizzying Architectural Photography

All images by Carsten Witte. Used with Creative Commons permission.

We’ve seen a great deal of noteworthy architectural photography in the recent years, a lot of them clean and minimalist, some mind-bending, some moody, and others trippy. We’re adding another one on the list: a collection of dizzying and hypnotic snaps of Frankfurt’s architecture by Hamburg-based photographer Carsten Witte. Aspiring architectural photographers could very well pick up some ideas from his unique take on the craft!

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Pygmalion Karatzas Presents a Geometric Showcase in His Architectural Photography

All images by Pygmalion Karatzas. Used with Creative Commons permission.

As we’ve already seen in a number of previous features, one of the most popular and interesting approaches to architectural photography involves a minimalist and abstract look in contrasty black and white. If this this is your favorite way to capture the beauty of architecture around you, the fine art photography of Greek architect and photographer Pygmalion Karatzas might just serve as today’s inspiration.

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Slava Semeniuta Paints Architecture in Trippy Colors

All images by Slava Semeniuta. Used with Creative Commons permission.

Colors are no doubt among the powerful elements that make photos eye-catching, especially when they come in clever forms and applications. If it’s color you want, you can trust Slava Semeniuta to deliver images dripping with trippy hues. We’ve seen him take his passion for vibrant hues down the streets and up in the mountains. Today, we bring another beautiful color play from the Russian artist and photographer with a set titled Ghetto Streets on Acid.

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Carsten Witte Reimagines Dubai’s Skyscrapers as Monolithic Architecture

All images by Carsten Witte. Used with Creative Commons permission.

Dubai is home to some of the world’s most iconic skyscrapers in modern times, making it a prime playground for architectural photography. While the possibilities and ideas for portraying these buildings are endless, Hamburg-based photographer Carsten Witte presented an interesting perspective with his straightforward architectural photography in the city.

In a set he interestingly calls Desert Tombstones, Carsten emphasizes the stateliness of Dubai’s skyscapers, both in their size and their ultra modern design. Each building he photographed stands tall as a symbol of the city’s stunning architecture, rivaled only by a few in the world. Each also has their own distinct features, shapes, and patterns that are interesting to explore and capture as urban geometry studies.

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Florian Mueller Celebrates the Beauty of Architecture with Distraction-Free “Singularity”

All images by Florian Mueller. Used with Creative Commons permission.

Without a doubt, there’s something hypnotic about the dizzying mix of buildings and skyscrapers in many of the architectural photography and street snaps we find. Still, for Germany-based Florian Mueller, one of the best ways to embody the beauty of buildings around the world is to capture them on their own, much like minimalist portraits. Hence, his Singularity project was born.

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Sebastien Del Grosso Creates Moody Portraits of New York City’s Architectural Icons

All images by Sebastien Del Grosso. Used with Creative Commons permission.

New York City is home to some of the world’s best known architectural landmarks that are essentially fused into the city’s history and identity. Paris-based graphic designer and photographer Sebastien Del Grosso presents these notable sites of architecture in a different light in a moody, black and white photography project.

When we speak of photography work featuring New York City, we immediately think of the monochrome street photographs that show its busy and vibrant city life. Every now and then, however, we also see projects focused on the eclectic mix of architecture in the city. Sebastien’s New York Black Series is one such body of work, but perhaps presents it in a way not all of us are used to.

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Sebastian Weiss Explores the Outward Personality of Architecture in “Dramatis Personae”

All images by Sebastian Weiss. Used with Creative Commons permission.

In portrait photography, the goal is to capture the essence of a subject’s personality and make use of a certain mood to match or highlight it. For Hamburg-based Sebastian Weiss, the goal of his architecture photography is more or less the same for an ongoing project. If you’re into this genre of photography and are curious about how he captures the “personalities” of buildings and architectural elements, this is definitely a body of work you’d be delighted to see.

Sebastian describes himself as “passionate about concrete aesthetics and the beauty seen in city shapes.” When you have an eye or appreciation for architecture like his does, you’ll definitely see it in his work. In his ongoing project, Dramatis Personae, Sebastian harnesses this passion to capture not only the beauty of works of architecture, but their personalities.

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Ekaterina Busygina Envisions Moscow as a Serene White City

All images by Ekaterina Busygina. Used with Creative Commons Permission.

For anyone who has mastered the art of architectural photography, one of the tricks of the trade involves creative use of details. This is exactly what we see in the works of Russian architectural photographer Ekaterina Busygina, who uses this technique to highlight the geometric harmony found in buildings and architectural elements. Aside from this pleasant display of balance, her set, called White City, also depicts what future cities would look like. Much like how Lars Stieger reimagined buildings and structures as spaceships, Ekaterina used Moscow’s architecture to explore the idea of ultra modern cityscapes being stark white, serene, and strikingly coordinated. It’s a fascinating exercise on how architectural photography can be an effective tool to harness the power of imagination.

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NYRoamer: Timeless, Classic, Seductive Black and White Photography (Premium Interview)

All images by Ashley NYRoamer. Used with permission.

“There is something so alluring and soulful to me about black and white images.” says Photographer Ashley NYRoamer, an Instagrammer and a member of the Sony Alpha Collective who shoots a whole lot in black and white. “I feel they are timeless, classic, and seductive.” Based in NYC, she sees the world in lines, light and moments. But most importantly, she isn’t techy. Instead, she’s straight up just artistic. Ashley is one of the many photographers who has found recent fame due to Instagram as have a lot of others in the Urban Geometry community.

By combining just the right tones and lighting, Ashley captures moments in cities that aren’t so much of a one trick pony as you’re probably used to seeing in the Instagram hashtags. Instead, her work varies from being minimalist, linear, and sometimes even gives us a number of angles for us to check out.

Talk to us about how you got into photography.

My dad bought me a Nikon DSLR, that I had intermittently played with over the years. I remember going to Alaska in 2010 and really taking an interest in shooting the landscape. It wasn’t until Instagram that I really began to focus on taking pictures regularly,

So what attracted you to Urban Geometry? It’s a genre you seem to shoot a whole lot of.

It was a natural process for me, living in NYC. It’s so easy to come across these lines and shapes in the city, mixed with the beautiful scenery of buildings, streets, architecture, and various subjects. I feel like NY is a photographer’s playground.

You indeed shoot color, but the majority of your work is in black and white. So why do you tend to go more for black and white than color?

I began shooting solely color, but fell in love with black and white photography about 2-3 years ago. There is something so alluring and soulful to me about black and white images. I feel they are timeless, classic, and seductive.

If you weren’t doing photography, how do you feel you’d try to creatively express yourself? Do you feel that maybe because of your predisposition to black and white that you may have gotten into charcoal drawings?

I have always appreciated art and creativity. I can’t imagine myself not taking pictures, so it almost difficult to imagine any other creative outlet. However, I did love drawing and painting as a kid, so it is quite possible that I would have explored that. I also played the violin for 15 years, so it is possible I would have explored musics.

What are some ways that you’ve continued to stay motivated and shooting? Do you think that having a day job gives you that sense of balance at all?

I feel so fortunate to live in a place like NYC, which constantly provides so much visual stimulation and countless opportunities to photograph. Again, it is a photographer’s playground, there is simply never a dull moment. I think simply living in in the city constantly feeds my passion to photograph everything. It is a passionate hobby that continues to inspire me.

I do think having a day job, one that is not creative, provides me with balance. Working in corporate America, with facts and figures, deadlines, analyses, and the need for continued solutions can sometimes leave me feeling frazzled. The opportunity to snap a few pictures after a long, stressful day is cathartic.

As you’ve gotten more and more into photography over the years, what photographers do you feel have influenced you and your work?

I was first exposed on Instagram to black and white photography, in following @mr007. His images opened a door for me, which perpetuated a fascination with black and white photography, and lead me to explore the works of the great Ansel Adams, obviously more nature based, Vivian Maier, Henri Carter Bresson, Irving Penn. I am blown away by Vivian Maier’s incredible work.

Do you feel that moving to the city has changed the way that you think about art and photography? How so?

I don’t think moving to the city has necessarily changed how I think, but I believe photography in general has done that. I am incapable of looking at beautiful scenery (no matter where I am) without wanting to immediately capture it. If I see gorgeous sunlight or light reverberations, I am immediately reaching for my camera. It has changed the way I see everything.

Where are some of your favorite places to photograph in NYC? What makes them so magical?

That is a difficult question, as there is simply never a dull moment in NY. I can be on my way to shoot Central Park, which is one of my favorite places to be, and I will see ten other things on my way that I snap. There are great areas like the Village or Chinatown, or Lower East side, great for street photography and amazing subjects, but, I don’t limit myself. No matter how many times I see it, standing on the Manhattan Bridge and shooting the Brooklyn bridge and cityscape, still amazes me. Standing in Jersey City and looking at lower Manhattan still amazes me. I think it is the view of the city that sill excites me. We are a resilient, strong, and beautiful city. Seeing the World Trade Center will still bring me chills and sends a message of hope.

What do you think is more important: shooting what you feel or feeding the Instagram algorithm machine? How do you tend to maintain a balance?

Shooting what you feel is much more important. I don’t understand the algorithm machine and I never will. I have never been a suggested user, I grew organically, and I have never been on the “fast track” algorithm that many people are, which means, they get insane likes no matter what is posted. I think it can get very old and monotonous, to continue to post solely for likes — feeding the audience the cliche shots of Empire State Building everyday. While it is beautiful to me, I sometimes find myself wondering where the creativity is. I have much more appreciation for an image that captures amazing light and the silhouette of someone,as opposed to an image which may simply “feed” the algorithm machine and uses no skill.

I try to maintain a balance by posting what I love. I learned long ago on Instagram that black and white photography was the minority. Therefore, if it was just about seeking likes, I picked the wrong choice! (ha)

Talk to us about your rise on Instagram. What do you feel have been your bigger turning points?

When I started on instagram, I posted silly pics of my personal life- food, dogs, etc. As I became more interested in photography, that changed and my feed improved. I think for me, the pivotal point was when I started posting better images, that I felt were artistic and of good quality. I had been iPhone for a long time, The absolute turning point for me was getting a Sony alpha camera. The quality of pictures did not compare to what I had previously posted.Sony Alpha for me was the absolute turning point, about 2 years ago.

What about the gear that you use? Tell us about that and the way that you process your photos?

I feel like I should be embarrassed to say that (ha!) I am still shooting with a Sony a6000. I almost feel it is antiquated at this point!
I have had my eye on the a7, which I will probably get soon. I predominantly use the kit lens which is the 16-50 mm. I also sometimes use the 55-210 mm lens.

I am also probably the only one who STILL (ha!) edits on my iPhone. I minimally edit my pictures, for better or worse. My go to edit is snapped and filterstorm. I try to really preserve the integrity of the picture and only usually sharpen and crop the picture.

What do you tend to do to keep your work fresh?

That is a difficult question, as I don’t “think” too much about what I shoot. I shoot what I love, what I see, and what I feel. It comes very naturally to me. I am drawn to light, as most of us are and it seems so easy to find in NY and there are so many opportunities. I also find my love of black and white photography draws me to moody street scenes, like a rainy day in the city that depicts a man holding an umbrella. Timeless classics appeal to me and those Vivian Maier style scenes drive me.

So what’s on the horizon for you Ashley? How do you see yourself progressing as an artist within the next year due to the ever changing industry?

I feel fortunate to have this as my passionate hobby, it is something that continues to interest and challenge me. Instagram has changed in many ways, much not for the best, but I am grateful to have met so many amazing creatives. I am grateful to be a part of the Sony Alpha Collective, as I feel shooting with Sony has changed my life and provided so many wonderful opportunities for me. I will be grateful to remain a part of Sony and strive to continue to improve my skills. Having just returned from the Sony Kando trip was just the dose of inspiration I needed. It also further solidified my devotion and appreciation of the Sony Alpha family.

Street Photography vs Urban Geometry: What’s the Difference?

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer SNAP! Pro iPhone case review samples (18 of 21)ISO 251-1600 sec at f - 2.2

What is street photography? That’s a question that a lot of photographers can’t really answer. Why? Well, when you think about it, it’s a term that could mean that you literally just go out into the streets and shoot photos. But that’s not what it’s recognized as in the art world and that’s also not how it’s associated amongst those of us who do it.

In recent years, another trend has popped up that stems from street photography. It’s called Urban Geometry: and it’s a different type of capture process that revolves more around art vs documenting the human condition.

For those of you who are confused, keep reading.

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Composing Better Cityscapes and Building Photos

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7r review photos brooklyn bridge reddit walk (8 of 14)ISO 1001-60 sec at f - 4.5

Photographing buildings can be tough sometimes when it comes to working with big and crowded cities. Getting to the right spot, composition, and even exposures can vary greatly and what should be a very careful and slow process can sometimes be rushed. But it doesn’t have to feel that way if you just make it a habit to follow a couple of key practices.

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20 Tips on Photographing a City

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony NEX 5n on willyberg bridge (11 of 11)

Heading to a big city for a vacation sooner or later? There are lots of things that you should remember when going and taking photos. Obviously, there are the mannerisms and ways of the people in each city which you should abide by, but then there are other tips you should keep in mind.

Here’s a bunch.

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