It is easy to bring the camera to the eye level to capture an image and as many of you may have noticed, the majority of images captured generally at also from that point of view. However, experiencing with different viewpoint can yield some incredible results.
I myself have be known to be found in awkward position in the middle of the streets with my camera doing my best to capture my images. Allow I get the odd looks, there is no better feeling than an image from a point of view that is uniquely your own. Let’s not forget that experimenting a uniquely alternative viewpoint in photography is a great way to create images, scenes and subjects in a way that has not been seen before.
As an architectural photographer, I make it a habit of seeking unusual vantage points. If there’s something around you that is safe to climb for a better vantage point, why not have a look. In cities, high vantage point offer an interesting look to the city. Everywhere I go I try my best to capture as many as I can.
The above image was taken from The Shard. From such a vantage point, everything is so small and I personally find the view therapeutic. It allows me to thing and makes all my worries insignificant. If this view is possible then everything is possible.
In London, there quite a lot of hotels that have roof terraces that are easily accessible. These views offer stunning views onto the city. The type of images that you capture depend on how high up you are and also which lens you use. For sweeping views, I always go for my favourite lens the Canon 17 – 40mm. It is a zoom lens which allows for a wide variety of use and it is also great for architecture.
Do bare in mind, that tripods are usually allowed in popular attractions such as The Shard but at such vantage point, it is not required because everything at that distance does not need a lot of depth of field. At high vantage point, patterns become readily available to the eye.
Move in low and close to a large structure with a wide angle lens on your camera and the perspective and scale are exaggerated to create some interesting angles.
As an architectural photographer, the find that the strongest compositions and images are from the angles that I am not normally used to seeing. Architecture is an ideal subject for low angle photography just make sure that you look up often for patterns especially in places such as museums. The National History Museum in London is an amazing place for such images. The style of the building offer numerous composition. Just make sure you get and look up.
One thing that I am not a huge fan of when it comes to wide angle lenses is that at their widest, they introduce distortion to images but it can be taken advantage to create some interesting images.
Low vantage point in photography can also offer some interesting angles. If you get low and look up in front of a building using a wide angle lens, you will create a dramatic converging verticals and the wider the lens, the stronger the effect.