Category Archives: Detroit architectural photography

Agree Realty photography

Agree Realty photography

These images from the Agree Realty photography project that I did for Biddison Architecture are two of the more complicated interiors images that I produced as part of the overall project. This very stylish kitchen and dining space presented a couple of technical challenges. Number 1 was the blue LED lighting strip that runs the length of the far wall. When exposures were made based on the ambient light level of the room, the LEDs were well beyond the dynamic range of any camera sensor or film. Also, the intensity of the LEDs cast blue spill light throughout the room. While this looks very natural in person, in photographs this blue spill is exaggerated and becomes overwhelming, filling the space with blue light. The second challenge was to maintain detail in the dark wood on the refrigerator, lower cabinets, island and stools.

In order to properly expose the LEDs and avoid blue spill light from contaminating the neutral colors of the space I used multiple captures. First the room lights were turned off and captures were made for the blue LEDs. Next, the blue LEDs were turned off and captures were made with the room lights turned on. The final captures were made using flash to light the dark wood paneling and stools. A Gossen ColorPro 3F color meter and a color checker were used during image capture to insure accurate color rendering. All captures were color balanced in Adobe Lightroom before final compositing in Photoshop. In post production we restored just enough of the blue reflections and spill light to provide a realistic look.

Biddison Architecture did a great job in transforming a tired and dated building into a beautiful and comfortable headquarters for Agree Realty. Biddison Architecture received an AIA Detroit Honor Award for the Agree Realty headquarters project.

Agree Realty photography

Agree Realty kitchen


Kitchen at Agree Realty Headquarters

Kitchen at Agree Realty Headquarters.

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Night photography of Detroit’s Chene Park Amphitheater

Night photography of Detroit’s Chene Park Amphitheater

The Chene Park Amphitheater photography project was part of a multi-building architectural photography project for along time client. I was given a list of seven buildings that had been completed years before but that, for some reason, they had never commissioned photography. Any architectural photographer in Detroit is familiar with Chene Park and the Chene Park Amphitheater. Built in the late 90’s, the Chene Park Amphitheater is a popular concert venue and is also used for graduation ceremonies by many Detroit High Schools. I wanted to provide my client with an architectural photograph that was visually arresting. I scouted the site to determine the best vantage points and then returned on a sunny Saturday morning to do the sunlit photographs. While I felt that these would be nice I knew that night photographs would capture the true feel of the amphitheater. I checked the Chene Park theater schedule of concert dates and then watched the weather. The forecast looked good for the evening of June 25 when Marcus Miller & Jose James would be performing. With sunset at 9:15 I arrived at 9:00pm to set and wait for the best light. About 30 minutes after sunset the sky took on a purplish hue and I watched while the stage lighting cycled through reds, oranges and blue. The blue looked best and contrasted well with the green grass and the orange sodium vapor lamps at the far left and right of the scene. Just before the sky lost its color I made the final digital captures. I think that that my Night Photography of Detroit’s Chene Park Amphitheater project was a success.

Night photography Detroit's Chene Park Amphitheater

Detroit’s Chene Park Amphitheater at night

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Night photography Madison Building, Detroit

Communication Associates needed an architectural photographer to produce twilight exterior photographs of the historic Madison Building in Detroit. I was pleased to get the call and have another opportunity to work once again with their creative director, Beth Blase. Beth is a bit of a task master and always has a shot list that I think is too big for the time we have to shoot, but somehow we always get the shots that she needs and have a good time doing it.

It was a cold late afternoon in December when we met outside the Madison Building to get started on the photography. Because the Detroit Opera House, a Ticket Master Office and a couple of coffee shops are all nearby, we had are hands full trying to persuade people not to park in front of the Madison Building while we were shooting. We had already made arrangements with the tenants to turn on all of the interiors lights, so once I had the camera set up it was just a matter of waiting for the right light while Dan, my assistant and Beth kept cars away from the building.

All in all in was a productive evening at the Madison Building for this Detroit Architectural Photographer!

Night photograph of the Madison Building in Detroit

Detroit’s Madison Building at Night













Night photograph of the sign at the Madison Building in Detroit

Madison Building sign at night








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Detroit architectural photographer

Detroit architectural photographer

Being a Detroit architectural photographer, I should be used to this weather, but I’ve had just about enough cold, snow, ice, freezing rain and more snow for one winter. I’m not sure how people do it in areas of the world that are really cold. Working outside when it’s -10F is not too bad when you are properly dressed, but in the mid-west we know that this is temporary and it is going to warm up in a few weeks. Somehow that makes it much easier to put up with working outside in the cold. I can’t imagine living in a place like Barrow, Alaska where the average mean temperature for July is only 40.4 degrees! How do you work outdoors when it’s -45F?

Like most people living in the U.S. mid-west or southern Ontario, I enjoy the different seasons. Autumn can be spectacular and a snowy winter can be fun and beautiful. One of the great joys of being an architectural photographer is the opportunity to spend so much time outdoors while photographing breathtaking sunrises and sunsets. But this cold weather is outstayed it’s welcome and I am very ready for spring!

Detroit architectural photographer

Woodward Tribute in Pontiac, Michigan on a snowy winter night.

Roses against a red brick wall at the Chass Center on Fort Street in Detroit.

Roses against a red brick wall at the Chass Center on Fort Street in Detroit.

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