Why Choose a Professional Architectural & Interiors Photographer in 2016 / by Rob Crawshaw

Seeing comes before words. The child looks and recognizes before it can speak
— Berger, Ways of Seeing, 1972

How hard can it be?

So, your most recent project may be about to complete, you're planning your budget for the next or you're looking to put some real estate on the market and it comes to thinking about how you share the space with the public. You might think - how hard can it be to take a picture of a inanimate object? You could take them yourself with your smart phone or point & shoot and call it good. You may have a friend with a 'professional' camera that can help. You may even have a deal with your marketing/PR agency or with an advertiser who will send their photographer to come in and quickly take a few 'acceptable' images for you. 

I understand this. It takes extra time, effort and money to get a professional in when you can get an acceptable result otherwise. Along with this, as time goes by, technological advances in cameras and the field of photography has made it incredibly easy for most people to pick up any modern digital camera or smartphone and, in a lot of situations, produce an acceptable image, making photography often an afterthought.

Why settle for second best?

Architectural photography, however, I believe is not one of these situations. The project or property may be worth, tens, hundreds of thousands or even millions to you. You've gone the extra mile to ensure every angle is covered, satisfied your client and that you have achieved your vision. So why stop there? Whether you are an architect, interior designer, restaurant, hotel or bar owner, a real estate agent or anything in-between, considering a professional architectural photographer as part of your next project is more important than ever.

When you are selling your services and products to the public, do you want them to look acceptable or the best possible? The images in which your work is shown has to effectively communicate your ethos and vision to attract the clients you want to work with and to show off your skills and expertise. Imagine you're looking for an interior designer, architect or buying a property, you have many options, one of the the first things people look at are the images. If your photography does not effectively communicate the quality of your work then it's possible you will be overlooked based on that alone.

Imagine Nike using airing a commercial or launching a product taken on a smartphone? Would you book into a 5* hotel for hundreds a night based on a snapshot? Or visit a michelin star restaurant with anything less than a stunning home page?

Smartphone snapshot - composition is OK but the detail and mood is lost.

Smartphone snapshot - composition is OK but the detail and mood is lost.

Final image delivered to client - composition is carefully considered, discussed and lighting is added to bring out the details in the space and create mood.

Final image delivered to client - composition is carefully considered, discussed and lighting is added to bring out the details in the space and create mood.

Choose a professional and tell a story

This is where a professional comes in. A professional architectural photographer will work with you to ensure the space is photographed in the way you envisioned it, capturing it's essence, functionality and individuality. They are here to get stuck into the details of your project and not only what you have done, but the effect this has on the end user as well. They will help you ensure your design, space or property stands out from the crowd in the increasingly competitive market and that it entices potential clients. They can also help paint a picture or tell a story behind a project. Whether this is through clever staging and use of models, or through supplemental lighting or cutting edge post-production, there is always a lot more to an engaging and stand-out architectural photo than just the taking of the photo itself in 2016. I am yet to find a person that does not agree with me on this.

Yes it may come at a price, but so does anything that demands a certain level of quality - a good chef, project manager, skilled craftsman, web designer, the list is endless.

So I challenge you to consider the impact a carefully considered photography project can have on your business - do you really want to settle for acceptable or do you want to be outstanding?