Today I have been out and about , looking for a location to shoot my first architectural pictures. The weather is not at all pleasing, but is it ever in Belgium ? So, I decided to visit the Bijloke in Ghent. A new modern building with tied lines and volumes. I wanted to try something difficult, something that was in essence only white with some shades of gray.
So here it is: This was not shot with the Cambo , since I am still waiting for some minor parts. Never the less it is a good time to go look and find places. Often it is finding the right location, the right light conditions and permission if needed.
Shooting inside buildings is in most cases not an issue. However when you show up with a truck load of material then people may start to wonder what the hell you are doing.
So I rather go and see the place first and most of the time I will ask permission to come back with my final gear.
I would say that in 70% of the cases the people will have no reservations or objections.
Although I have come across situations where people became suspicious . When that happens, it is better to accept it and just walk away. In many of these situations something is wrong with the place , and I mean in legal terms. It is not uncommon to run into building violations, or the lack of a building permit. Any how there are plenty of other places to take shots. In some cases you might end up with a building that is protected by copyright. The architect that designed it may have very strong feelings about his creation and may not accept that one makes pictures of the building without his permission. In that case it is better to have a release form in your pocket and ask for permission. Of course there is a lot of public area that is free .
Electricity plants, train stations and airports are a special category all together. Some time ago I was scouting a cole based electricity plant from the adjacent public parking, within minutes I was surrounded by security guards. The only thing that I could do was to erase the pictures. It was explained that due to the terrorist threat it is forbidden to take pictures of the plant. Hmmm, at least they could put a sign up. Arguing does not help , and the best thing is to pack and go. Train stations are another area of concern, but you can get permission from the station head. Airports, that is another piece of cake all together. I did visit the Brussels airport and before I even attempted to make one shot, I visited the airport security office with a request to shoot pictures at the departure hall (public area). The answer was simple ” You must apply four weeks ahead of time , and when accepted you will get a pass”. The next thing I got was an application form….and a return ticket home. I guess it is all about strategic security. Times have certainly changed to the worse. Never the less, I will continue to scout locations and fill in forms and papers …..
To be continued with the final shots.