The Art of Building Photography Competition 2016 – the images I have entered

I have just entered The Art of Building competition 2016, the brilliant photography competition run by the CIOB.

The closing date for entries is today, 27th November 2016.

To find out more about this competition head to

The competition is described by the CIOB

“The Art of Building photography competition is an international showcase for the very best digital photography of the built environment. It is open to both professional and amateur photographers.”

You can find out more about the competition at

And you can find out more about the CIOB at

I am a member of the CIOB, achieving the designation Member of the Chartered Institute of Building some years ago. I have the letters MCIOB, which sit nicely next to one of my other professional qualifications, Licentiate of the British Institute of Professional Photography. LBIPP.

These two professional qualifications fit happily and nicely next to each other, and are why it was only natural that photographing buildings turned out to be my calling.

You can enter three images in the competition, and this year I chose the images you can see in this post.

I wanted to submit something a bit different.

The first image is this.

Roof tiles, Chideock - construction photography in Dorset by Rick McEvoy

Roof tiles, Chideock - construction photography in Dorset by Rick McEvoy

This picture is of the roof tiles on the new roof of Chideock Church in Dorset. I photographed this classical new domed roof to the church for the architect, Andrew Stone. I like the pattern and the colours. This picture was taken using a focal length of 400mm, and at this focal length I have managed to exclude everything else from the image. That just the leaves the tiles in no context at all. Quite an abstract image. Graphic almost. A work of art?

Hamworthy Park Junior School - interior photography in Dorset by Rick McEvoy

Hamworthy Park Junior School - interior photography in Dorset by Rick McEvoy

The second image is the picture of the windows overlooking the sea in the extension to Hamworthy Park Junior School. Another picture taken for the architect, Kendall Kingscott. Why did I choose this image? It is the light through these large, floor to ceiling windows. That and the fantastic view from the school classroom in Poole, Dorset.

Winchester School of Art, part of the University of Southampton - architectural photography in Hampshire by Rick McEvoy

Winchester School of Art, part of the University of Southampton - architectural photography in Hampshire by Rick McEvoy

The third image is of the new extension to the library at Winchester School of Art, part of the University of Southampton. I chose this picture as the lights in the building illuminate the street furniture in the foreground, giving interest and depth to the image.

So these are my three images entered for the CIOB Art of Building Competition 2016.

Rick McEvoy Photography Blog

Sunday 27th November 2016

Hamworthy Park Junior School - Architectural Photography Image 3 for my new Photography Portfolio

Image number 3 in my Commercial photography Portfolio. More architectural photography - Hamworthy Park Junior School, Poole, Dorset.

Hamworthy Park Junior School, by Rick McEvoy Architectural Photographer in Dorset

Hamworthy Park Junior School, by Rick McEvoy Architectural Photographer in Dorset


This image was taken in February 2016 of the recently completed extension to Hamworthy Park Junior School in Poole, Dorset.

Client for this project was the Borough of Poole, the contractor was Midas Construction, and the architect who commissioned the photography Kendall Kingscott.

This was one of the last shots taken on the day of the shoot, in blue hour, that magical hour after the sun has gone before darkness descends. In Poole in February this is 6pm.

I had to wait for all the little people to leave the school, and was working my way around this fantastic extension to the school.

I was after exactly what you see – there is still some colour in the sky, you can still see the features outside of the school, but clearly you can see in as all the lights are on, giving the total visual range of the scene.

I had envisioned this outcome at the beginning.

This shot was taken from my large stepladders, using my Manfrotto Magic Arm clamped onto the top.

Exposures were 2.5 seconds, 0.8 seconds and 10 seconds (or the two stop over exposed shot), auto-bracketed in AV Mode on my Canon DSLR.

All taken at F8, ISO 100, Canon 6D with 17-40mm F4L Lens set at 17mm.

10 seconds on a pair of stepladders is pretty good I have to say. I could have pushed the ISO but having practised with this set up I knew it wold be fine. Had I not practised who knows?

But to get such a clean, sharp shot under such circumstances is an achievement (even if I do say so myself!).

I knew I could get a sharp shot even with such long exposures so could keep the ISO down as low as possible, at 100, to get the best quality possible. One of the things I have learnt to do in such circumstances is to stand on the bottom step of the step ladders and breathe very slowly! I must look quite ridiculous but all these little things added together help me to get great results like this.

Processing of this shot was tricky. The shape was quite complex, and there are contrasting lights and darks in the scene, as well as through coloured render with a subtle shade of green. As I was taking photographs for the architect everything has to be correct of course! And that is one of the many challenges of architectural photography – getting everything just as is it.

You can see some more of my, to be honest, rather outdated architectural photographer work at Go over there soon before I update the pages with all my stunning new architectural photography work.

Tomorrow I will post the three RAW images I took, along with the initial edit issued to the client, so you can see the progression from capture to portfolio, which is quite a lengthy process.

But I will repeat myself, the client issue version took quite some time to edit, but the portfolio shot had even more care and attention to get to this polished result. This is a level of editing that I will not be repeating for this shot (hopefully), but the edited image will be used in the promotion of me and my architectural photography for some time to come.

And once I have a completed Portfolio I can sit back for a while and work on swapping images as and when something of a portfolio standard appears.

Whilst I will be updating my gallery pages on a regular basis I will not be going through a wholesale renewal of my commercial photography portfolio for quite some time, hopefully years. This is why I am investing the time in myself now for the future.

I already know what my next learning steps will be, and also have a very exciting shoot coming up very soon which I have been waiting a long time for. Unfortunately I will not be able to publish any of this work for months due to client confidentiality and the sensitivity of the subject I am shooting.

Thanks for reading this post, and please call back to my blog tomorrow at to view the images mentioned above.

Photography Portfolio - Day 2 - Mastering Adobe Photoshop Adjustment Layers - with a real construction photography image

Did I find the magic trick? The one golden tutorial that told me how to do the one thing I wanted to do?


It is not that simple.

Of course it isn't.

So I don’t have completed, polished image number one, so I am going to post the original, single (correct) exposure image today so you can see the starting point (and buy me some time to this sorted).

Here it is. Construction photography. One of my favourite things to do. Well is it architectural photography or construction photography? This is a bit of both. No matter.

Horndean Technology College, Hampshire. The building has recently undergone a major building refurbishment, having the external walls and roof completely replaced, and the internal space remodelled. There is also this fantastic external space.

This is the story I am trying to convey. And this image does that (well not this version of it).

This construction project was photographed for the architect, Kendall Kingscott

Unfortunately, I do not have before shots of the project.

Over the next few days I will try to explain how a flat RAW image is transformed into a bright, vibrant, technically correct portfolio image.

But lesson number 1 is

Layers are great.

Non-destructive editing. I have done some work to this shot, but not in a layer. And now I have to do it again. This time I will do it in a layer and save it as a PSD file.

Now you might be thinking - hang on - why do you not know everything about Photoshop?

well the answer is, no-one does. And I have managed to use Lightroom for the vast majority of my workflow since Lightroom 1 came out and I started using it, that Photoshop is something I call on for final cleaning up. Now I am progressing my editing skills to the next level.

But the basic principle remains - the less editing in Lightroom the better. And a great image might never see Photoshop!

But as a construction photographer I sometimes need to do a bit more editing work than I would say for a landscape, as there is the technical element to the finished image that has to be technically correct due to the subject matter and the client’s requirements.

Thanks for reading this post, and please call back tomorrow to see if I am making any progress!