Cape Town, South Africa House on the Hill

Last month I traveled to South Africa. The main purpose of my visit was to visit my girlfriend who lives in Durban. While there though I was able to setup an architectural photoshoot in Cape Town (a two hour flight from Durban). The shoot was for a contact I met through the online design forum of

We arrived in Cape Town the morning of the photoshoots and had a chance to scout out the city a bit before my shooting that afternoon. What can I say about Cape Town other than it is by far the most beautiful city I’ve ever seen. Granted there are many places in the world I’ve never been, but from the places I have been and seen Cape Town “takes the cake”. Here is a shot I took from Signal Hill; one of the many viewpoints you have within the Cape area. This shot looks towards what is known as “Lion’s Head” and Bantry Bay.

The first house I was to shoot is on the Western side of Signal Hill. The design is an addition and renovation of an older simple gabled house that is the last property on the hill before it becomes park land. As we entered the house we proceeded to the main space, the Lounge. This space really captures what the house is mostly about… Capturing the view you have from the side of Signal Hill, looking out and over the city to the Atlantic Ocean. Here is the view as you enter in the Lounge…

What made this shoot a challenge was the amount of time I was given to shoot it. My architect friend, Andrew Nimmo, had only set up an hour of shooting time with the owner. The owner was present while we shot and so we didn’t want to intrude too long.

I started shooting in the Lounge space to get myself oriented and give myself ideas of how to shoot the project. The space is very much about the view and so capturing it with the view became an important part of how I captured it. After the Lounge I moved to the patio area out back which has views back into the space of the dinning room and lounge. The bedrooms were next and then a few exterior shots. That was about it…

A few more shots from the Lounge area…

On the Technical side I used my 580 speedlight on camera to add some fill light by bouncing off the ceiling. After this experience of shooting this project I really feel that picking up another 580 and another light stand would go along way in helping give better light to the interior spaces like the ones I shot on this project. I was able to compensate for this somewhat with multiple exposure shooting and blending exposures in post but I know that I can have  better control of my light and exposure with using speedlights shot through umbrellas, strategically placed for each shot.

I’ll let the images speak for themselves… For the short of amount of time I had I’m very pleased with how these all came out… Hopefully you will agree???

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