Tag Archives: night photography

Aerial drone photography in the snow

My goal for this project was to produce winter scenes of this house in southern Ontario. The stone and block on this beautiful home are manufactured by Arriscraft, the Stone Products Division of General Shale. I was hired by ad agency Creative Energy to to produce photographs that would be used in General Shale’s calendar and in marketing material for Arriscraft and General Shale. Aerial drone photography allowed me to produce overall views of house, property and surrounding area. The ability to produce photographs that are just few feet above tripod height as well as detail photos of the upper levels of a building make drones invaluable for architectural photography.

The twilight photography was shot with a Nikon D800 on a Manfrotto tripod. The aerial drone photography was done with a DJI Inspire 1RAW drone.

Exterior photography in the winter can have it’s challenges but this day was quite nice with temps just below freezing and almost no wind. The only challenge was the icy crust on top of 10 inches of snow made walking with a camera and tripod a slow process.

The aerial drone photographs were done with a DJI Inspire 1RAW drone. Aerial drone photography is perfect for a project like this. To shoot overall views of the house in the surrounding area I may take the UAV up to an altitude of 100 to 150 feet (30-50 meters), but for most of the drone photographs I like to shoot from very low altitudes. I find that the range between 15 and 50 feet is the altitude I use for the majority of my drone photographs of buildings.

Because the house was so well lit with soffit pot lights, the twilight photographs were pretty straight forward. I combined separate captures of the sky, soffit lights, porch lights and interior lights. These were all balanced in post production to produce the final images. All of the proofs from this project an be seen here: https://claytonstudio.com/escarpmentdr/

One of the benefits of shooting in the winter is the short day. Shooting from sunrise to twilight in mid summer can mean a 15 hour day while in late December that can be as short as 9 hours.

Twilight architectural photographyAerial drone photography in winterAerial drone photographyAerial drone photography, Drone photography in snowAerial photography



Posted in Aerial & Drone photography Also tagged , |

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

Posted in Detroit architectural photography, night photography, Uncategorized Also tagged |

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












Posted in Detroit architectural photography Also tagged , |