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Architectural Elements in Street Photography

Street photography
Image by Fernando González from Pixabay
This is a collaborative post

If you love capturing some very candid moments of life in the city, street photography should be your passion. However, aside from the focus on human subjects, the success of street photography and the ability to capture some striking images that tell a story to your viewers also depends on another element: Architecture. This includes structures like buildings, monuments, bridges, etc.

Such elements enhance the visual narrative of street photography by creating balance, contrast, perspective, etc., and also reveal some landscape aspects such as culture, identity, history, etc. In this article, we will explore the role of these elements in enhancing street photography and revealing the hidden aspects of urban landscapes.

Understanding Architectural Elements

These refer to an architectural structure’s parts that make up its style. They include things like space, form, light, material, texture, colour, etc., which affect the mood and atmosphere of a space. They also include the point, pane, line, and volume, which show how a structure goes from a single point to a 3D shape.

Architectural elements are vital to street photography because they increase the meaning of images and make them more interesting. They can also highlight the difference, symmetry, balance, mood, and perspective in images and reveal aspects of the city, such as its culture, identity, and social issues. If used well, you can employ these elements as a very useful tool to educate your viewers about a city and its people. Some examples of architectural elements that can be employed in street photography include shadows and silhouettes, environment, and details.

Incorporating Architectural Elements in Street Photography

One way to make your street photographs more captivating is by highlighting the architectural elements in your images, as these elements create your images more meaningful and more interesting to the viewer. There are many compositional techniques you can use to achieve this purpose. One such technique involves the use of lines, shapes, and perspectives.

Lines, the most basic element of formal analysis, can be used to create more complex shapes or lead the eyes of the viewer from one area in the composition to another. On the other hand, shapes, whether geometric, organic, simple, or complex, are a product of lines and are areas enclosed within the lines. At the same time, perspective refers to how a photographer shows depth or distance in a 2-dimensional image. Perspectives are either linear, atmospheric, or aerial.

Using lines, shapes, and perspectives helps you show the details and dimensions of architectural elements in your images. For example, diagonal lines or curves can create dynamic compositions, contrast, and movement. Also, linear perspectives can be used to show the horizon line, while atmospheric perspectives tend to show the effect of light and air on distant objects.

Another compositional technique involves the use of infrared photography. This uses a special filter or a converted camera to capture light that the human eyes cannot see and is best applied in outdoor scenes with vegetation. Some effects of infrared photography include making the plants appear white or pink and making the sky look dark and dreamy. This can uniquely impact your images, making them look dreamy and surreal.

Infrared photography of a lake with trees and sky behind and vegetation in the foreground
Image by Henryk Niestrój from Pixabay

Infra-red photography can highlight the architectural elements in your images by creating a contrast between them and the natural elements. For instance, making a building stand out against a white or pink vegetation background is a great way of highlighting the building and drawing the attention of your viewers.

The Role of Architectural Elements in Storytelling

Storytelling is a powerful tool photographers use to convey a message and mood in their photos. One way of achieving this is with the use of architectural elements. When employed rightly in pictures, these elements can create striking images that reveal the history and culture of a place and talk about the interaction between the people and their architectural surroundings.

The architecture of a place reflects the values, identity, and traditions of that place, as well as historical events and influences. For instance, the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the great wall of China are two great engineering structures that not just talk about the cultural and political history of France and China respectively but also showcase the industrial and artistic achievements of the place, as well as acting as a reminder for several historical moments in the timeline of the country.

Therefore, by photographing these elements, you have successfully managed to convey a story of several messages to the viewer with just a single click.

Additionally, architectural elements can capture the interaction between people and their architectural surroundings by showing how they interact with the built environment and how they use, modify, or transform it. One way of achieving this is by using distance to dictate how the viewer perceives the subject and the context.

Depending on what you want to achieve, you can either use close, medium, or long shots to emphasize the character of your subject and its story and relationship with the architectural space.

Techniques for Photographing Architectural Elements

Light and shadows are among the most important ways to capture architectural elements. These can help highlight the form and function of a building, as well as create contrast, depth, mood, and drama in your images.

Different characteristics of light, such as intensity, direction, quality, and color, can help you achieve different emotions and effects in your photos and emphasize certain features of the building, such as shape, texture, or pattern. For instance, the early morning and late evening suns produce warm light with soft tones, while side lighting can create strong shadows and backlighting to create silhouettes.

Found on various surfaces such as water, glass, metal, or mirrors, reflections can be used to create symmetry, contrast, or distortion in your images. Similarly, the texture of various materials such as brick, stone, wood, or concrete can be used to show the building’s quality, age, or style. Additionally, reflections and textures can add interest, variety, and complexity to your images and create surreal or abstract effects. The importance of distance in portrait photography cannot be overemphasised too.

Showcasing the Urban Landscape through Architectural Elements

The urban landscape reflects the social, cultural, environmental, and economic aspects of human civilization, and one way of showcasing this in your photography is by using architectural elements. Photographers can showcase urban landscapes using architectural elements by exploring architectural landmarks in street photography. 

These landmarks, such as the Eiffel Tower, the Statue of Liberty, etc., are often widely recognized and admired for their design, history, or symbolism and often represent a city’s or nation’s essence or identity. Therefore, by capturing them, you can showcase the urban landscape in a captivating and memorable way using different angles, compositions, lighting, etc., to create different moods, atmospheres, contrast, symmetry, contexts, etc.

Eiffel Tower
Image by Edi Nugraha from Pixabay

Also, you can highlight the character and identity of a place to showcase the urban landscape through architectural elements. Influenced by various factors such as history, culture, and geography, character and identity can be expressed by architectural elements through their form, function, style, and symbolism. Capturing these architectural elements that highlight the character and identity of a place, you can showcase the urban landscape diversely and authentically.

Tips for Photographers

Here are some tips to help you take some striking shots of architectural elements in your street photography:

  • Look for iconic landmarks of a city or nation, such as the Eiffel Tower of Paris, and capture them from different angles, perspectives, or compositions to create symmetry, contrast, or drama.
  • Look for reflections and textures on various surfaces and materials to add interest, variety, and complexity to your images.
  • Look for light or shadows to create contrast, depth, drama, and mood, as well as highlight the form and function of the building.
  • Look for people and context to create a sense of scale, movement, or narrative in your images.

In addition to these tips, having the right gear and skills is crucial to capturing the best architectural images. Some recommendations and technical considerations are:

  • Use a wide-angle lens to capture more of the scene and create a sense of depth and perspective.
  • Use a tripod to stabilize your camera and allow you to use slower shutter speeds for long exposures.
  • Use manual mode to give you more control over camera settings to achieve the desired exposure and effect.
  • Use RAW format to preserve more details and information in your images and give you more flexibility in post-processing.


Architectural elements are more than just buildings and structures. They are the expressions and reflections of a city’s history, culture, and identity. By photographing architectural elements in street photography, you can showcase the urban landscape in a captivating and memorable way. You can also explore and unveil the unique architectural beauty of the urban landscape surrounding us. This essay has inspired you to grab your camera, hit the streets, and discover the stories and secrets behind every architectural element.

Why it is Time to Master Studio Photography

This is a collaborative post

Regardless of how much time you have put in as a photographer, there is always room to get better. Shooting on location has its advantages but it is far from the most optimal option, especially if you want to get the best possible shot.

For that reason, a photo studio for hire may be the best choice. If you have little to no experience in the studio realm, here are a few crucial reasons why it may be time to master the art of the studio photography shoot.

Studio photography set up
Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Gain Control

Even amateur photographers understand the beauty of having control. The perfect lighting, the perfect backdrop, the perfect subject, etc. all combine to make the perfect photo. But shooting on location makes that infinitely more difficult.

For that reason, if you want to become a master photographer, you need to become comfortable with the studio environment. Before long, it will become apparent just how much better the studio setting is. With fewer variables to contend with, you can ensure that you have the best possible shoot.

Create Greater Comfort

While the focus of any shoot should be on taking the pictures, that is not the entirety of the process. There are a lot of things that happen over the course of a shoot and keeping comfortable can be quite difficult, especially when on location.

Another reason to master the photo studio shoot is to keep yourself, your crew, and your subjects as comfortable as possible. Many studios offer things like kitchens, bathrooms, office space, and even a pre-lit lighting grid. That’s not even mentioning all of the backup items that are available. The more comfortable everyone is while shooting, the better the process is likely to be. Make sure that your next shoot – and the ones to come after – are as pleasant as can be.

Master the Diverse Background

Taking photos at a higher than amateur level means diversifying yourself. It means being able to change backdrops and environments to create the optimal shot no matter what the situation. Working on location means having limited sets and backdrops to work with.

But when you work in a studio space, it is more than likely that you will be working with a green screen. Green screens project the background over the top of the screen, allowing for any background type to be used. This is a great way to practice shooting in different “locations” and with different backgrounds. For those looking to grow their experience and photographic portfolio, there is nothing quite like shooting different backgrounds all in one convenient space.

Creating Professional Shots

Perhaps you feel like you have the best shot possible. You look through the photos on your camera and feel good about everything. But until you sit down to pore over them and go through the editing process, you can never really be certain. If you are shooting on location, however, that usually is not possible.

Travelling, sometimes over great distances, just adds to the process. By working in a studio space and checking some great quality stuff at, you can have access to all of the equipment that you need to create the perfect shot in one space. Take a few shots and check them out immediately with editing equipment. Whether the shot is perfect or not, you can gain insights into what patterns are developing and make any changes necessary, either to your technique or to the photos themselves.

Mastering the studio photo shoot is something that any aspiring photographer should work towards. It is just one of the many assets that the pros have, separating themselves from the amateurs.

Ways To Save Money On Home Photography

Image by Shutterbug75 from Pixabay
This is a collaborative post

If you have a passion for photography, and the ability to show different aspects of even the most common of items or really capture someone’s unspoken emotions, you might find your hobby takes up a lot of money. However, there are ways to save money on photography, read on to find out more.

Printing your own photos

If you print your own photos at home, you can save money by getting the best price on your ink cartridges at Printerinks. They have cartridges for most printer models, including canon printer inks. Not only will this save money, but you can also save time by printing your photos at home instead of travelling to your nearest shop to get your images printed. You also won’t have to wait for them to arrive by post if you order prints online. Whether you have a personal or professional photography project, you don’t want the wait for photos to delay you.

Camera on a desk next to a laptop
Image by Daniel Friesenecker from Pixabay

Cheap backdrops

There are plenty of cheap and creative ways to make the backdrop to your photographs more inspiring than a simple plain wall. Covering your wall in brightly coloured streamers is one way. Another is to use a sheet, but you can decorate it with anything you like, from flowers to painted seashells. Or you can use fairy lights behind a lighter coloured sheet. Remember, any backdrop you use only has to cover the specific area you’re capturing.

Look for inspiration in your local area

At first glance, your local area might not seem like a hotspot for photography opportunities. However, you can save money by not travelling further to get inspiration for your photos. Instead, look closer to home. Try looking at things differently. You see the same scenery every day as you pass by, but by capturing something from a different angle, or zooming in, you show it in a more distinctive way.

Finding cheap props in charity shops

If you want to add props to your photographs, these don’t have to cost a fortune. You can find lots of interesting props in charity shops. Just about anything can be used as a prop. The only limit is your imagination. For example, you might want to use items to make something else stand out more. These don’t have to be items you’ll use again. You can always re-donate them to the same or another charity shop afterwards.

Make use of free software

Sometimes it’s not possible to get the photograph you want, or the desired result means travelling too far and spending too much money. With free or cheap software, you can still make the scene look authentic after you’ve taken your photographs. Sites such as Canva or Lunapic can help you do this. A lot of their features are free, and some of the premium features are affordable.

There’s more to photography than just pointing a camera and clicking. Making your photos stand out takes planning, creativity and photo editing skills. None of this has to be expensive though, and you can always find ways to cut costs without lowering your expectations.

Using Your Photographs

woman with a camera - using your photographs
Image by StockSnap from Pixabay
This is a collaborative post

When you spend a lot of time with a camera in hand, it can become difficult to figure out what to do with the images you take. While some of them may not be fit for use, due to lighting, movement, or other circumstances, some deserve far more than to be kept on an SD card or in a drawer until the end of time. Even though it may be the creation of the photographs that you are passionate about, these can be put to good use if you give them the time and effort that they deserve.

Art for Your Home

When you take photos of your family, friends, or nature around you, there must be something present that inspires you to want to eternally commemorate that moment. Instead of letting it go to waste, these can be used to adorn your home. Not only that, but these bespoke pieces will be totally unique to your living space. You could choose to have them framed as they are, or instead have high quality hexagon photo canvas prints to give more of a modern feel, especially when combined with a background that matches your overall décor. Due to the flexibility of canvas choices, these could sit flat against the wall, or you could even use a box frame, allowing for differing levels of wall art in your rooms.


Another great use for your photographs can be as gifts for special occasions. Any photos you have taken previously, whether they be casual pictures where the recipients were unaware of the camera or even paying homage to loved ones or memories, can be transformed into a unique and thoughtful present. You could also choose to go one step further, making a handmade frame for the photograph to reside in, as part of your gift. These will undoubtedly be loved by the recipients due to the thought and care that goes into their creation.

Public Usage

One other, more unconventional way you can use the photographs you have taken is to build up a small bank of extra money. Selling your photos for use as stock images online allows you to collect a tiny percentage per usage, which can go towards what you wish. This also means that your photographs have the opportunity to be used within the wider world, bringing enjoyment and fulfilment to strangers all across the globe. Even if you have no real use for an image, that does not mean that it has no purpose. It can be incredibly gratifying for a photographer to know that his or her work has value to another, and is being used, even in cases where the recipient is unknown.

While taking the pictures themselves can be a great hobby, it can also be deeply rewarding to know that something has come out of your hard work. Instead of taking pictures simply for the enjoyment and sake of it, you can also ask yourself what role the images can have within your wider life, giving you even more pleasure for every photo you take.

1 Day 12 Pics February 2020

I remembered to do 1 day 12 pics today, even though the reminders I’d set in my phone had somehow disappeared!
Here are my 1 day 12 pics February photos.

1 – We’ve hardly used our National Trust membership since joining last August so we decided to have a family afternoon. Unfortunately, Aiden couldn’t come as he was working so it was just the four of us.

National Trust app - 1 day 12 pics February

2 – We decided to take lunch with us so I could stick to Slimming World.

lunch plan

3 – We were on our way. Both Ant and I love this house.

Woolsthorpe Manor

4 – Arriving at Woolsthorpe Manor

Woolsthorpe Manor

5 – KayCee and Ella enjoyed the science centre.
We sat in the cafe after and had a drink before our guided tour of Issac Newton’s house.

holographic apple - 1 day 12 pics february

6 – Issac Newton portrait

Issac Newton portrait - 1 day 12 pics february

7 – On our way home.

 our way home

8 – On the way home we dropped KayCee at her friend’s and we went to visit Nanny and ChiChi.

Chi Chi 1 day 12 pics february

9 – Ella’s watching Supergirl season 2 again. I don’t know why because she’s going to get all upset again when Mon-El leaves!

watchng Supergirl with Ella

10 – I’m relaxed while Ant made us chicken curry and rice for dinner.

11 – We have loads of Pointless episodes recorded. KayCee and Ella aren’t keen but Ant and I really enjoy watching it together.

watching pointless

12 – Nearly forgot to add the photos to the blog post today. I’m now going to get a drink and watch something with Ant. Not sure how long we’ll be watching for, though, as I’m already fighting the urge to fall asleep!

writing a blog post

1 Day 12 Pics January 2020

I’m going to try to remember to join in with 1 day 12 pics each month. I’ve not had much success in previous years but I’ve actually created draft posts for each month this time so hopefully, I’ll manage all year!
So I go with my 1 day 12 pics January 2020/

1 – running a bit behind today cos I totally forgot and didn’t hear the reminder.
We’re off shopping to Home Bargains and the farm shop #buylocal

On the way to Home Bargains

2 – I only went in @homebargains for a 12-week food diary for £1.99!

Home Bargains receipt

3 – Number 3 – We love the shop at Spinney Farm. We had the best tasting satsumas and clementines from here and have now decided we’re going to get all our fruit and veg from here.

Spinney Farm shop

4 – 2 egg Omelette with 2 veggie sausages (2 syns), left overcooked cauliflower, mushrooms and 1 HEA cheese portion.
Totally on it this week 

Slimming World omelette

5 – catching up with Derry Girls Bake Off

Great British Bake Off New Year with the Derry Girls cast

6 – planning next week’s #slimmingworldmenu

menu planning - 1 day 12 pics January 2020

7 – relaxing for a bit with an online jigsaw

1 day 12 pics January 2020 - online jigsaw

8 – recipe for dinner tonight #slimmingworld

Slimming World easy chicken curry recipe

9 – visiting Nanny and Chichi 🐶

Chichi the dog

10 – trying gel polish for the first time using a kit I got for Christmas from my daughter, Ella 😊

Gel nail varnish - 1 day 12 pics January 2020

11 – first try at gel nails didn’t turn out too badly!

gel nails

12 – watching Big Fat Quiz of the Decade with the hubby 😁

1 day 12 pics January 2020 - Big Fat Quiz of the Decade

February 2019 1 Day 12 Pics

For those who don’t know, 1 day, 12 pics (#1day12pics) is run by @emmadaviesphoto on Instagram. On the first Saturday of each month, you take a photo every hour until you’ve taken 12 photos. Here are my photos from the first Saturday in February 2019

February 2019 1 Day 12 Pics

February 2019 1 day 12 pics 01 - snowing, finally!
Photo 1 – Finally, it’s snowing in Lincoln 🙂

February 2019 1 day 12 pics 01 - reading Harlan Coben No Second Chance
Photo 2 – the 4th book of my 2019 Goodreads challenge

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - still reading
Photo 3 – Still reading

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - the snow has gone
Photo 4 – the sun is melting the snow 🙁

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - ella's cake
Photo 5 – Ella made a cake for our pudding tomorrow after Sunday lunch

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - Sudoku
Photo 6 – Took a break from reading to do a sudoku puzzle

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - finishing my book
Photo 7 – Finished my book just in time to get ready to visit Nanny

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - Peter May book The Lewis Man
Photo 8 – This is my next book for my Goodreads Challenge

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - mocha coffee
Photo 9 – enjoying a mocha at Nanny’s

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - Watching Ghost Whisperer
Photo 10 – Watching Ghost Whisperer with Ella. I’ve seen them all before, but it’s her first time and we love watching them together 🙂

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - beef and aubergine bake Slimming World dinner
Photo 11 – Ant made beef and aubergine bake for our dinner

February 2019 1 day 12 pics - Breyers Delights ice cream
Photo 12 – Delicious, low calorie ice cream 🙂

1 Day 12 Pics January 2019

Well, I failed my first 1 day 12 pics of January 2019! I’ve been trying to pack away Christmas all day and because I was so busy and because I was doing much the same job all day, sometimes I forgot to take a photo and sometimes I didn’t really have anything to photograph!

I managed 10 photos I think and I’ll add them to the post tomorrow because right now, I’m just too tired!

1 Day 12 Pics January 2019 – 1

1 day 12 pics January 2019 - first coffee of the day
First coffee of the morning and I’m trying not to think about the huge task I have ahead of me. It usually takes a couple of days to pack Christmas away and I can’t be bothered to start!


excel spreadsheet for my boxes of Christmas decorations
My excel spreadsheet to help me keep my Christmas boxes organised


Christmas storage boxes
Some of our Christmas storage boxes


Watching Who wants to be a millionaire
Taking a break while we have lunch and watch Who wants to be a millionaire?


another coffee, this time in my winnie the pooh mug
Another coffee, this time in my Winnie the Pooh mug


candles burning
These candles I had for Christmas smell wonderful


Christmas decorations made by the children
I found a tin of Christmas decorations that the children have made over the years. I’m keeping them safe because they’re all too old to be making things like this in school and college anymore!


the Christmas tree is still up
I didn’t get around to the tree. I did manage to pack all the kitchen Christmas things away, though 🙂


starting a new cross stitch kit
Going to do the rest tomorrow and tonight, to help me relax, I’m starting a new cross stitch kit. This is a stamped kit and it’s the first time I’ve tried a stamped one. It takes a little getting used to but I think I’m going to enjoy doing it.

1 Day 12 Pics November 2018

For those who don’t know, 1 day, 12 pics (#1day12pics) is run by @emmadaviesphoto on Instagram. On the first Saturday of each month, you take a photo every hour until you’ve taken 12 photos. Here are my photos from the first Saturday in November 2018

1 Day 12 Pics November 2018

1 Aldi released the first Kevin The Carrot Christmas ad and I love it 🙂

Screenshot of Aldi's new Kevin The Carrot Christmas advert for #1day12pics November 2018

2 I started working on our showstopper for the blogger’s bake-off.Norfolk Lavender sugar for making lavender shortbread #1day12pics November 2018

3 After the lavender shortbread, I made gingerbread for the showstopper.

Ginger and mixed spice for making the gingerbread house with

4 Lunchtime!

Lunchtime beans and fried agg on toast

5 we caught up with Gogglebox.

Jenny and Lee on Gogglebox

6 We just needed to quickly nip to Asda, but when we got to the end of our road we found the traffic was at a standstill due to an accident so we ended up going to B&M instead.

On the way to B&M

7 I love this Santa decoration at B&M, but I’m not buying any more decorations because we don’t need any! For some reason, I’ve been a bit more reserved when it comes to Christmas shopping this year.

Santa decoration

8 We always visit Nanny and Chi Chi on a Saturday and have a cup of coffee.

Coffee in a mug

9 Chi Chi always comes for a cuddle 🙂

Chi Chi the dog

10 Chicken tikka ready meal, side salad and an apple for dinner.

Chicken tikka ready meal with a side salad and followed by an apple for dinner.

11 Relaxing with Anthony and doing some more of my cross stitch.

Working on my Santa Christmas cross stitch

12 Well, we were trying to relax and watch some TV but we keep getting mini power cuts so the TV goes off, as does the internet which means we have to keep waiting for NowTV to reboot back up!

The TV is off because we keep getting power cuts

October 1 Day 12 Pics #1day12pics

The reminders worked on my phone for a change today so I remembered to do October 1 day 12 pics. I did forget to post them to Instagram throughout the day, though, so I’ve just posted them all, one after the other!

October 1 Day 12 Pics

1 – Reading my book while enjoying my morning coffee

October 1 day 12 pics number  1 - Maeve Binchy book and coffee mug

2 – Working on getting as many October posts scheduled as I can.

October 1 day 12 pics number 2 - blog dashboard calendar

3 – I fell in love with this battery-operated snowglobe at the Range today. I’m going back to buy it once we’ve had our half-term holiday.

October 1 day 12 pics number 3 - snowglobe with Santa inside

4 – Shopping is thirsty work! We stopped for a coffee at The Range.

October 1 day 12 pics number 4 - Costa coffee mug filled with mocha

5 – Leftover Slimming World chicken and leek pie (recipe coming soon!) for lunch today.

October 1 day 12 pics number 5 - leftover Slimming World chicken and leek pie for lunch

6 – Catching up with For The People.

October 1 day 12 pics number 6 - watching For The People on TV

7 – I bought this cross stitch kit last year and started it, but I put it away after Christmas and forgot about it. It’s coming along nicely now 🙂

October 1 day 12 pics number 7 - working on Santa's hat on my cross stitch kit

8 – Catching up with Corrie.

October 1 day 12 pics number 8 - catching up with Corrie

9 – Chi Chi loves her monkey!

October 1 day 12 pics number 9 - Chi Chi the dog with her toy monkey

10 – Slimming World Chicken mushroom medley for dinner

October 1 day 12 pics number 10 - Slimming World chicken mushroom medley

11 – Watching Gogglebox with Ant. It’s one of our fave shows.

October 1 day 12 pics number 11 - watching Gogglebox

12 – Doing some more cross stitch.

October 1 day 12 pics number 12 - doing some more cross stitch

I’m taking part in Blogtober18 with Mandi at Big Family Organised Chaos

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