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Digital Photography FAQz by Jeff Wignall

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Q

How can I avoid getting things like power lines and street signs in my architecture shots?

A

Power lines, telephone poles, and all types of signs are the bane of an architectural photographer’s existence — professionals and amateurs alike. Sometimes, it seems like even the simplest of country churches has a spider’s web of wires attached to it, and these can ruin an otherwise interesting photo. Because there’s nothing you can do to eliminate the obstructions, the only solution is to be aware of them and try to subdue their presence.

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The simplest way out is to look for a vantage point that downplays the worst of the distractions. Power lines, for example, are normally attached to one side of a building (if you’re lucky, it is the rear), so if you shoot from the opposite side, it softens their appearance. Often, you can hide power lines behind a tree or the corner of the building. When photographing this local historical society in Connecticut, I found a viewpoint that hid the telephone lines behind a dogwood tree.

However, in more urban settings where street signs, traffic lights, or other buildings are a problem, getting close to a building with a wide lens is usually the only way to get an unfettered viewpoint. Another solution is to isolate details of the building, such as an ornate cathedral door.

Q

How can I remove power lines and other distractions in editing?

A

There ...

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