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Humanity in Architectural Photography

As the famous William Shakespeare quoted "All the world's a stage". It is to certain extend relatable that the world is a stage and we are the actor playing a role on the stage. And architecture just happens to be part of the stage that we dance on. The relationship between architecture and human at this point of time is arguably inseparable. So to say if the architecture isn't utilised by humans, then there is no purpose for its existence. This is where photography steps in to portray such a complex relationship into a form of art that people can understand at a glance.


Before the camera was introduced and widely available to the people, art was mostly presented in the form of cravings, paintings and sculptures. The influence of adding elements of humanity in arts is even believed to have started as early as the days of wall cravings. Taking pre-modern days sculptures by Gian Lorenzo Bernini and Michelangelo as example, the details of humanity in their artwork was presented in the form of movements. ie; the strong distinctive elements found in the folds in their sculpture's fabric. Those elements were subtly added to present characteristic of humanity in the sculpture to bring life to an object which was otherwise lifeless.


The same is believe to apply when it comes to architecture photography. To bring life to an architecture photograph, some sense of humanity must present in it. The absence of humanity touch would mean that the documented architecture is just a mere lifeless concrete building. By adding humanity into the photograph, it will transform the architecture into a structure from a static and dead building to a more lively and relatable building. The subtle sense of humanity through stylistic decision is what provides an anchor that represents the signature of time, when and where the architecture is built.


Here is how we are able to subtly add and portray humanity in architectural photography.

1) Adding living things (human, plants, flower, animal, etc)

2) Embrace the light & reflectiveness of the building, space and materials.

3) Appreciate and understand the architectural structure.

4) Creative styling (Utilizing wardrobe and relevant props to represent the mood).

5) Include environment, neighbourhood and community activity.

6) Embrace naturally induced movements.




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