Thursday, July 2, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 7-2-2015

Monochromatic images are a way to focus singularly on subject.  Color, while extremely beautiful in its scope and infinite possibilities, may cause the viewer to be distracted from the real intent of the photograph.  Of course, this is a very personal choice: color or monochrome.

Another way to focus on a subject is to abstract it.  Although this may seem contradictory, abstraction often brings out the very essence of a focal point.  In order to abstract, the photographer/artist must understand completely the essence of the thing that is  central to the work.  This knowledge of the subject expands to include form, line, composition to create the abstraction.

This Opera House dome is breathtaking when viewed in person.  Photographs of the ceiling are often visually busy and complicated with distractions.  I chose to abstract the subject while retaining elements of the stunning architectural embellishments.  Sepia monochrome seemed a soft background to make the individual elements pop.

Sepia Architectural Photography


To learn more visit:
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/10/29/black-and-white-photography/
http://masteringphoto.com/black-and-white-vs-color-photography/
http://thevirtualinstructor.com/types-of-art.html 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography June-21-2015

Few experiences can be as aesthetically captivating as entering a place of worship, to say nothing of the religious engagement.  The hushed and holey atmosphere, which is suffused with a light that orchestrates an emotional association to worship and faith, provides many sensory experiences.  The shafts and swirls of light, often rich textures, ornamentation (or lack of it), frequently musty aromas, enveloping sense of sacredness and muffled sounds in these places: churches, synagogues, mosques, shrines are carefully architected to create uniquely particular feelings for the visitor.

Throughout time, the clergy, architects, builders, engineers and designers sought to use light to enhance, emphasize and define space.  Religious structures particularly were infused with a mysterious smokey light or luminously falling shafts of light that illuminated and emphasized the sacred areas and articles of worship.  Whether light played over prayer books, the statuary, images or the alter itself, light has always been channeled as a vehicle for messages from above.  The Incas constructed Machu Pitchu to receive a single shaft of light just once a year, as well as to burnish the entrances to what historians believe to be Inca holey places.  Gothic Churches were designed so that the devine light poured into the nave of the church to illuminate the way to the alter.  However the light was transmitted, it added enormously to the religious experience.  

Light has many uses and allures.  Employing light to augment religious experiences creates wonder, great beauty and an impact possibly like no other.

Sepia Architectural Photography

 
To learn more about light and religious structures visit:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gothic_architecture
http://sunearthday.nasa.gov/2005/images/ao_poster.pdf
http://reviewofreligions.org/2306/ancient-sun-worship/

Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 6-13-2015

Serendipity is marvelous!  Just when you think you are never going to find something new, there IT IS.....staring at you through your lens!

On a recent trip to latest NYC "hot spot," Long Island City, I was thrilled to see the skyline in a fresh way.  We parked on an upper floor of a municipal lot for a night on the town, Queens style.  Through the gaps in the concrete structure of the parking lot, I saw Oz: my personal interpretation of Manhattan.  I was transfixed by the sight of the stunning view of Manhattan bathed in lights.  Night lights are always alluring and this jewel-like presentation is no exception.

When ever I leave my house, a point and shoot camera is in my bag or pocket.  That way, when serendipity calls, I'm ready!

Black and White Architectural Photography

To learn more visit:
http://www.favrify.com/new-york-skyline/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Architecture_of_New_York_City

https://derekstadler.wordpress.com/portfolio-2/collections-photography/maspeth-from-small-dutch-community-to-part-of-the-great-metropolis-final/the-history-of-long-island-city-details-of-its-short-lived-days-as-both-an-incorporated-municipality-and-the-major-western-terminus-of-the-long-island-rail-road/



Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 6-7-2015

I am fascinated with and inspired by light in any form.  And, as usual, my insights into light and its many configurations have a way of presenting when I am not looking for comprehension.  I came across a wonderfully profound aspect of light in an odd but familiar context quite by chance. When I was in college, I took a geology course.  One of the classes took place in a cave (!!) where we looked at natural rock formations.  The cave was very dim and our professor eschewed flashlights in favor of studying the rocky surfaces and outcroppings au natural.  It was OK but on that field trip an incident occurred that changed my perception about seeing and understanding all that is visual.  There was a hole in the top of the cave and for some reason I looked up just as a drop of water, gilded with light fell through the gloom.  It enchants me still, thinking of that single beam of golden light descending through the dim cave.  All at once I could fathom the glorification of light by the ancients.  Comprehend the beauty of natural light in its many guises.  The experience reinforced my desire to use light as the most pervasive element in my work.

While natural light is sublime, electric and other artificial light sources have their charm and value.  Often old electric fixtures can create unusual or even unique lighting scenarios.  This hallway graced by magnificent and imposing old chandeliers offers light that casts wonderful pools and shadows.  The "noise" prompted by the darkness and the artificial rays is fog like and gives an aura of mystery.  That, coupled with the antique furnishings gives a time-travel-to-another-age feeling to me.  Light can transport as well as illuminate.

Sepia Architectural Photography

To learn more about the properties of light visit:
http://computer.howstuffworks.com/3dgraphics4.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perspective_%28graphical%29 
http://www.nightlase.com.au/education/optics/light.htm

Monday, June 1, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 6-1-2015

I am pleased and honored to be the subject of an article by renowned Interior Designer and Art Consultant Richard Rabel, whose knowledge of art and design I greatly admire.  Thank you, Richard!

http://richardrabel.com/new-york-architecture-photos-ellen-fisch-bronx


Black and White Architectural Photography: Bronx, NY

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 5-17-2015

I have written before about the genius of nature in constructing perfect structures.  There is no force or art like nature as it builds organic forms that work in simple design or in the infinitely complex.  Take for example a flower with petals that radiate out from the center.  Look at the marvelous way that the shapes integrate with each other: overlapping, supporting, designing the ultimate shape.  Never replicating a single construction, nature creates flowers that are each unique.  In a cookie-cutter world that accomplishment deserves our respect and the acknowledgement that nature is the supreme designer.

Sepia Photography   




 To find out design elements that can be learned from nature visit:
http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/11/engineers-bring-processes-of-nature-to-design/
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/12/11/science/engineers-ask-nature-for-design-advice.html
http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB120001999004483023

Sunday, May 10, 2015

The Art of Architectural Photography 5-10-2015

Light is the defining element of photography as well as of all the visual arts.  Without light, there is no photograph, painting or other aesthetic that depends on sight.  As the artist creates the art, light is always a critical concern.  The placement of light, the intensity of light and the relationship light has with shadow gives the artwork a unique quality that may be elusive or bold but never absent.  Many artworks incorporate light into other themes.  In those instances, light is a value to play off dark and to illuminate the mid-tones.  However, there are those works in which light is the focal point of the art.

I especially appreciate the art that has light pouring through a window.  The photographing or painting of natural light channeled through a portal is intriguing and often challenging.  The light may appear as shafts, rays, streaks, fog-like.  As well, surfaces react differently to the light as it comes through the window.  Some refract or reflect the light.  Others absorb light.  It is fascinating to watch the light as enters a space and claims the viewers attention.  Light has mesmerized artists since the beginning of time.  I am ever drawn to its allure.

Sepia Architectural Photography



To learn more about window light in art and photography visit:

https://www.artsy.net/article/jessica-famous-windows-from-art-history
http://www.uni-muenster.de/EuropeanPopularScience/win-sample/win-patek-text.htm
http://121clicks.com/tutorials/window-lighting-in-photography-tips-examples