Art and Architecture

PHP was approached to photograph a unique Travelodge Hotel building in the centre of Cambridge which turned out to be quite a challenge.

While the interior of the building will be familiar to many the exterior was completely unique and it’s position within the city provided its own problems when trying to shoot images that matched the architects visuals as requested by the client.

More after the Jump…

Regular client Merchant Place Developments approached the studio with a view to photographing a building that had just been completed for Travelodge Hotels in the stunning city of Cambridge. The hotel is to-date the largest Travelodge outside of the capital and it’s unique design incorporates custom artwork, photovoltaic panels and other architectural features you would generally not normally find on a Hotel of this type.

The brief was simple; to photograph the building from a similar point of view as the architects visual (below) and capture other standard and interesting features including the custom glass art, every elevation should be represented with interiors and plant rooms included in the shot list. The photography had to be completed within a 2 week window and delivered for use in marketing and promotional material in this time. The final building had changed in material and some design elements had also changed but the overall concept had remained.

Architects Initial Concept Visual
Planning for the project was tricky, the UK weather refused to co-operate and there was only one window of good weather that would provide the light and drama the client wanted. In addition the position of the building was problematic, it was positioned on a main road which was extremely busy all day and the layout was in the process of being changed. This meant that road cones were apparent all over and they could not be moved for safety and public liability reasons.
The planning was completed 2 days prior to the visit and a one day window had opened in the weather to get the shots with some blue sky. The building is north facing meaning that the shot most requested would be best lit at 5:30 – 6:30 am just after sunrise which worked well with the met office prediction of blue skies until lunch time and the warm sunrise light would enhance the colour of the stone and woodwork. 
The plan was to arrive the evening before, shoot the interiors and a few night time exteriors then to get up at sunrise and shoot the building from the key angles. On the evening scout it became apparent the earlier I was up to shoot the better, the client had requested no cars in the shots and to maximise the chances of that on a road that was busy throughout the night I had to get to work at 5:00 am.
© Philip Hunton Photography
The above image was the main shot requested by the client, unfortunately there were road works with 14 unsightly road cones covering the traffic island under the traffic lights, these were tricky to remove in photoshop but after some work it was completed which ensured the viewers attention would be on the building rather than the road works.

In addition to the main image above the developer also wanted to record the custom glass artwork they had commissioned for the building which was situated on the curved east elevation, a polarizing filter was used to minimise the reflections in the glass and to deepen the blue of the sky, creating an abstract detail shot which showed every detail of the piece.

© Philip Hunton Photography
In total over 50 high resolution interior, exterior and detail images were delivered via online drop box within two days of the shoot together with low resolution files suitable for email and web use. The manager and team at Travelodge Cambridge were extremely accommodating and several hotel customers commented to me on how much they enjoyed their stay.It was a nice surprise when I received an email from the manager, Kevin Lewis, which said “you have done a fantastic job, thank you”.
For more information on how PHP can help you or your business please visit the studio website www.philiphunton.co.uk or call +44 (0)191 236 1017
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