Sunday, November 7, 2010

Assignment 1: 3 - The Hypovereinsbank

Just across the street from Forum Bogenhausen is one of Munichs most impressive modern buildings, built in 1981 it dominates the surrounding skyline, very few buildings exceed its 114m height.  Photographically most images are taken from just below the towers looking up, creating dramatic perspective, however, this is not going to work well with a 24mm tilt-shift lens and is a rather clichéd view of the building.  For this assignment I want to place it into its surrounding environment.

The first two images are designed to provide a view of the immediate area, I like the juxtaposition of the bicycles with the bank.

Stepping back a little, the following two images show the bank shot from outside the subway station that brings its employees to their lofty office.  In this pair the second has better context.

Stepping even further back, I can include a number of the local office buildings, Forum Bogenhausen and the Siemens building.  The first image is taken with the camera deliberately lowered into scrubby vegetation that has grown up during some construction work nearby.

Coming back a couple of hours later, about 15 minutes after sunset, I had around 30 minutes before full dark to image the area in a more dramatic light.  At this time of year sunset is at almost exactly 5pm, so during twilight the offices are still occupied and the buildings come to life.  They exhibit far more personality, although now imaging any people is impossible as the exposure times are in the 10-30s bracket.  In the following sequence, the third image balances the available and artificial light best. The trails left by the cars add some movement to the images, not that I have any choice in a busy city during the rush hour.

Finally I left the Hypoveriensbank and walked around 200m down the street to another dramatic glass clad building.  This was a more challenging photograph to take as the light was almost gone and shutter speeds of even 30s could only come from an increase in ISO from 100 to 200.  I also wanted to image the overhead crane in the shot against the deep blue sky.  The two exposures only vary in the degree to which the light trails from the passing traffic impose into the image.  I cannot decide if this adds movement, or is a bit too much of a photographic cliché.

At this stage I am comfortable in my work flow, both pre, during and post shooting.  The editing and processing is a smooth process, although I am still not down to the 8-12 images that I plan to submit for this assignment.  I could stop now as I feel I have achieved the stated goal, but there are still 2 or 3 buildings/complexes that I would like to photograph, this assignment is providing a nice excuse to do some architectural studies in my neighbourhood.

However, any more photography will have to wait for a week or so as I head to California tomorrow for a 3 day business meeting, 24 hours on a plane for 24 hours of meetings!  Well it gives me a chance to do some serious reading, so expect to be able to add a book review or two to the blog soon.

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