Being a photographer who loves taking pictures of architecture, one thing that bugs me a lot is when things obstruct the view of whatever building I’m shooting. It doesn’t matter if it’s a tree, street sign or a person.
I’ll use all sorts of tricks to make sure I capture just the building, and not the unwanted obstructions. If people are in the shot, I’ll wait until they clear out (sometimes, waiting up to an hour for tourists to move out of the way). If it’s street signs, I’ll find a different angle where you see just the building. In fact, I took a photo of Windsor Castle one time where you only saw the top half of the structure, because of all the street signs AND tourists in the way.
But sometimes I can’t “cheat” my way to a clear picture, and so I try to take one with as few distractions as I can, and then edit them out in post-production.
This photo, of State Street Church in Portland, Maine, is a lovely mixture of multi-colored bricks, with some very cool towers and other elements. And thankfully, the telephone or cable wires are only in the sky, so I could easily use Photoshop to get rid of them one way or another. I wouldn’t consider the trees an obstruction in this case because–with the fall colors–it just adds to the charm of the church.
These next two images would take quite a lot of manipulation in Photoshop. I might be willing to mess with the church on the left, but probably not the house on the right, no matter how lovely all that ivy looks growing on the side.
But even though I might or might not be willing to edit them in Photoshop, I still like taking the picture, if for no other reason than to remember some lovely element of the image (more on that in another blog).
Now, this last picture is a Photoshop editing nightmare, and I DEFINITELY wouldn’t undertake it. The Victoria Mansion (also in Portland, Maine) is a lovely structure, with lots of cool columns and whatnot, but I wasn’t able to capture the entire building without being across the street (with the lenses I had with me). Unfortunately, being across the street meant that EVERY electrical wire got in the shot. Even just editing out the wires in the sky would take a good couple of hours . . . forget about where they cross the building.
But, I liked Portland, and definitely plan on going back some day. So I’ll be sure to bring some other lenses with me, and maybe I’ll be able to capture these buildings without any obstructions in them next time.