Architectural and Interior facade Photography


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Oct 18, 2007
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#1
Hi,

I'm looking into Architectural and Interior facade Photography, and am wondering if the Pentax SMCP-DA 14mm f/2.8 ED (IF) or DA 21mm F3.2 Limited would be a better choice for this.

Obviously, the DA 14mm sounds like a more logical choice with the extra width, but wondering if the DA 21mm would be just as useful for this type of photography. For me, issues would be distortions and CA. I've used kit lens lens for this before and found the outcome unacceptable.

If anyone has used either one of these two lens, please share your experience.

Also wondering if the Sigma 10-20mm would do a decent job for this if the photos are to be blown up to 8R size.
 

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Gengh

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#2
I've owned the DA14mm for a while, the distortions are very low for something so wide. I don't have any architectural or interior facade photos to show now, will have to see what I have at home later... What you're taking will mostly be relatively flat surfaces right? I'm guessing this will be the best choice for what you need.

Never tried the DA21mm, so I can't make the comparison. But Photozone does seem to say that it has more distortion than the DA14mm.

If you want flexibility maybe you can consider the DA12-24mm too? Probably higher distortion at the widest and longest ends, but if it's like most zoom lenses, the middle range should be pretty good. I remember reading somewhere that the Sigma 10-20mm has moustache distortion, but again that might be just at the widest end, can't remember for sure now.

Edit: After seeing Kit's reply, would just like to clarify that the distortions I'm referring to in my reply is barrel distortion. I assume that TS has already taken perspective into consideration when choosing to use wide angle primes...
 

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Kit

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#3
I don't use Pentax but can offer some advise where focal length is concerned.

The 14mm will come in very handy for tight interior spaces if you can live with the perspective distortion, which is inherent in wide angle lenses anyway. The ultra wide will give you very dramatic perspective of the spaces but do bear in mind, objects further away will appear much smaller than they appear to you. Its a lens that probably need some getting used to.

Distortion - You did not mention what kind of distortion you are experiencing. If its perspective distortion (where objects at the edges are being stretched), that's not much you can do about it since this is inherent in the design of wide angles. If it curvilinear distortions you are referring to, then the primes should do much better than what you are using now.
 

fengwei

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#4
For interior facade photography, better use a zoom lens 'cause most time there is no place for you to go back further ;) The Sigma 10-20 and Pentax 12-24 are two great super wide zoom lenses for this task. Both DA14 and DA21 are very decent lenses, but I do feel zooming w/ your legs are not possible sometimes ...
 

Oct 18, 2007
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#5
Thank you for the input.

I'm considering using my 16-45mm to a test run to see it is wide enough. 83 degrees compared to 90 degrees of the 14mm doesn't sound too far off. However, I wonder if the outcome will be good enough for large 8R prints.

Curvilinear Distortions, as mentioned by Kit, is one major concern.

I've checked out the prices of the DA14mm, Sigma 10-20mm and 12-24mm. The investment costs looks prohibitive at this hard times. Wonder if someone is willing to rent me a Sigma 10-20mm or a 12-24mm, in case I need them.

Ironically, I've got a DA 10-17mm but its totally useless for this since it is a fisheye.
 

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Kit

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#6
8R is not considered large. With proper techniques, you shouldn't have any problem with most lenses.
 

Kit

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#7
Curvilinear distortions can be fixed in post editing, so I wouldn't be too worried over that. Further, they can be avoided if you know how to work your way around when you compose your photos e.g. avoid long length of vertical or horizontal straight lines near the edges. If you are not making a living out of taking photos of buildings, you really don't have to spend so much.
 

Oct 18, 2007
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#8
Taking portraits is making me into a one-trick pony. Trying to diversify.

If you are not making a living out of taking photos of buildings, you really don't have to spend so much.
I'm seeing if I could boost up my portfolio for this. If the opportunity should appear, at least I want to have the gear and skills to do a good job. Your advice is greatly appreciated, Kit.
 

KangS

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As far as suitability in terms of well controlled distortion for architecture, and UWA lens, I think there's few that is (if any) better than the Sigma 12-24. One of the only UWA's where straight edges remain straight! ( at least that's what I've seen lah... :p)
 

Kit

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#10
If that's the case, then you have a lot to consider. Architectural photography is a pretty specialised field and just to meet the requirements of your clients, you need to be equipped with tools that will make your life easier. You will definitely need some kind of perspective control devices, be it a tilt/shift lens or a medium/large format view/field camera to be handy at all times. That's just the beginning.
 

Oct 18, 2007
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#11
I think there's few that is (if any) better than the Sigma 12-24.
I was salivating over the 12-24mm too, until I saw the price.

You will definitely need some kind of perspective control devices, be it a tilt/shift lens or a medium/large format view/field camera to be handy at all times.
I've been reading about the tilt/shift lens as well, but can't seem to find much option for Pentax. Would love to try out medium format as well.... perhaps I should experiment with this instead getting new lens.

Thank you, bro. You've given me a different perspective to consider.
 

KangS

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I was salivating over the 12-24mm too, until I saw the price.
Actually, SG$1k for such a lens isn't that exhorbitant. If you're thinking along this thread, then you can forget about tilt-shift lenses. Unless you get some really old ones, probably 3rd or 4th hand. Then again, I'm not sure if its available for Pentax. :dunno:
 

Oct 18, 2007
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#13
Actually, SG$1k for such a lens isn't that exhorbitant. If you're thinking along this thread, then you can forget about tilt-shift lenses. Unless you get some really old ones, probably 3rd or 4th hand. Then again, I'm not sure if its available for Pentax.
Its not about the price..... but the knowledge that you are buying what you will fully utilize vs buying something for experimental purposes.

And you re right about the tilt-shift lens. I remember a friend grumbling about the prices a few months back. I bet he will still be grumbling if I asked him about it (which I will anyways... heheh). Too bad he dun use a Pentax.
 

Kit

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And you re right about the tilt-shift lens. I remember a friend grumbling about the prices a few months back. I bet he will still be grumbling if I asked him about it (which I will anyways... heheh). Too bad he dun use a Pentax.
Well, like I said before. If you are not doing it for a living, you don't need to spend that much and you don't even need to grumble. If you are earning money from it, you won't grumble too because you know its a necessacity. If you are good enough, you can easily cover the costs with a single assignment.
 

Oct 18, 2007
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#16
Hi Gengh,

Thank you for the input. Didn't know about these options.



Hi Kit, I'm not disputing your logic. I'm just getting a bit frustrated that my desire to learn a new skill is not matched my my wallet.

On a positive point, I received some very kind offers and advice through PM.

Someone mentioned that getting into a course would be a better option as it would give me the skills that I need without taking a risk of a gear purchase. To bad he pointed out to a course that has started already. hehehe...

That seems to be the most logical option for me now through the medium format idea would come in pretty useful as well.


Anyway, thank you for all the tips and advice. I really appreciate it.
 

hjbyeo

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Its not about the price..... but the knowledge that you are buying what you will fully utilize vs buying something for experimental purposes.

And you re right about the tilt-shift lens. I remember a friend grumbling about the prices a few months back. I bet he will still be grumbling if I asked him about it (which I will anyways... heheh). Too bad he dun use a Pentax.
Price or not, there's a $880 12-24 f4 right now at Peninsula Plaza (2nd hand shop next to Cathay). It's for Pentax.
 

Kit

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#19
Hi Kit, I'm not disputing your logic. I'm just getting a bit frustrated that my desire to learn a new skill is not matched my my wallet.

On a positive point, I received some very kind offers and advice through PM.

Someone mentioned that getting into a course would be a better option as it would give me the skills that I need without taking a risk of a gear purchase. To bad he pointed out to a course that has started already. hehehe...

That seems to be the most logical option for me now through the medium format idea would come in pretty useful as well.

Anyway, thank you for all the tips and advice. I really appreciate it.
We are all faced with constraints every now and then. Not being able to afford an particular piece of equipment doesn't necessarily means you are hindered in any way. If you can find ways to work around your limitations, you will emerge better than someone who has everything in his disposal but failed to use them properly. Just look around, these instances are free flowing.

I (and I believe most people) didn't started with tilt / shift lenses or medium format cameras lying on the table waiting. With a film camera; a 20mm and 50mm lenses, I began learning the skills and it was not till 3 years later was I able to afford my 1st dslr.

Perhaps its time to look back at what you are using now and think what you can do with them. You might not even need to buy anything at all.
 

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