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Posted by Jeffrey (Scottsdale, United States) on 13 June 2018 in Cityscape & Urban and Portfolio.

Location: Phoenix, AZ

Many people, it seems, think of me as an architecture photographer, because most of the photos I take include buildings and structures as a large component of the compositions. And while it's also true that I do use specialized camera gear that lends itself to architectural photography by providing various "movements" that allow me to crop my compositions in various ways in-camera before I take the photo, instead of afterward, while sitting in front of a computer in a comfy chair, I really don't consider myself to be an architectural photographer per se.

Instead, I think of myself as being a documentary photographer. Or as a friend who photographs similar subject matter recently put it, an observational photographer. I photograph urban scenes at night, exploring the streets and alleys of neighborhoods with my camera as my visual notepad, using it to create a formal record of the various scenes I have observed.

This photo is a good example. Sure, there are houses visible in it and they are also a significant part of the composition, but this photo is not about them. Rather, it's about the scene viewed as a whole and the mood conveyed by how the disparate elements interact with each other: The interplay between the brightly lighted and dark shadow areas; the textures of the gravel and vegetation, as well as the shingles on the roofs and stucco on the walls; the shapes and colors of the structures and their positions within the composition, etc.

Ultimately, this photo isn't at all about the actual subjects it contains -- the "facts," if you will. It's about the mood the interaction between the various elements of the composition (re)creates in the mind of the viewer and their emotional response to it. Which also explains why only a very small number of people seem to "get" my photography, because it's not actually about what it appears to be about. <sigh>

A larger, higher resolution version of this photo can be seen here: http://www.canyonero.com/files/1528845595.jpg