What is Cityscape Photography?
When it comes to street photography, one of the most important aspects is mastering what is cityscape photography. A cityscape as defined by Webster means “a drawing or painting in relation to buildings and cities”.
This may seem easy enough but in actual fact there are a huge number of sub-genres of what is cityscape photography.
In this article I want to cover a few of the more popular sub-genres and what they mean to the street photographer.
In the process I hope that by the time you finish reading this article you will have a better understanding of what is cityscape photography and what categories fall under it. So let’s begin.
As previously mentioned what is cityscape photography can take on many forms. Within the broad range of what is cityscape photography there are some sub-genres worth looking into.
Within these broad categories there are some sub-sub-genres worth looking into. The first category which deserves a mention is what is commonly known as the “streetscapes”. These images capture cityscapes that are usually captured by running into the shot looking to the left or right.
One of the oldest what is cityscape photography genres is called the Light Trails category. In this category the image focus is on the trails of light created from architectural light trails.
Architectural light trails can be created from a building to the base of a tree or even a trail of sunlight moving across a cityscape.
Often these images are taken with a narrow aperture to display the faint reflection of the light trails and the depth of field required to get an effective shot.
One of the other what is cityscape photography fields is what is known as the Colorfield photography. In this category images are capture using color filters instead of black and white.
There are various color filter choices to choose from for different color scenes. There are times when using black and white filters can make an image look flat and boring.
This is not a problem when using color filters as they can be adjusted and blended with the image to make the final image look exactly how you want it to.
Colorfield photography is also very difficult to master. This is because the colors must be very bright and unnatural looking. It is not uncommon for images to have over five or six colors of color in them.
This requires multiple exposures and many cameras have light settings to allow you to adjust the number of colors used in a single image.
Another difficult part of colorfield images is the use of shadows. Most colorfield images require the photographer to have a good amount of digital sky effects so that they do not create an artificial horizon which makes the image flat.
Colorfield images require a lot of planning and luck if you want them to turn out good. A lot of amateur photographers try to make their images more interesting by using interesting backgrounds and techniques.
While this does help, nothing beats knowing your limitations. You should know what is cityscape photography, and what is better than taking a picture of the sky?
Sky is the most important part of the photo, but what is the architectural detail? This will determine what kind of camera settings to use, what effect you want to achieve, and what kind of backdrop to use.
If you would like to take photos of structures such as a skyscraper or bridge, you might want to try Landscape Photography instead of Architectural photography.
Architectural photography involves photographing tall buildings, but Landscape Photography usually only includes landscapes such as hills and rivers.
Despite what many people say, there is nothing wrong with using both architectural and landscape photographs in your photography portfolio.
It all depends on what you personally find interesting. People have different likes and dislikes, and what satisfies them may not interest another person.
I would recommend trying out different camera options and techniques when starting out on what is cityscape photography. Experiment with shutter speeds and white balance settings to get an idea of what works best for your image and which images turn out the best.
There are a number of software available on the market today which can help you experiment with different camera options.
Once you’ve learned the basics of cityscape, you’ll be able to take even more exciting and informative images that are sure to impress. Have fun experimenting with the camera options and I believe you’ll be rewarded with some beautiful images!