The architectural photographyof Alex Auro
In our latest Art of Brick article, we see how architectural photography can be composed like archviz through the art of Alex Auro, Brick’s Lead 3D Artist. Alex is a self-taught photographer who captures buildings with an atmosphere that takes you in. Below, you will find a selection of the photos he took in his free time and get to know Alex and how he goes about creating his shots.
Alex pursued his passion for architecture by studying at ETSAB Barcelona School of Architecture. One of his peers shared some impressive renders during their time there, sparking his interest in the world of architectural visualization. After completing his studies, he first joined an archviz studio in Barcelona, and in 2020 found his calling as a 3D artist at Brick. He has been making great strides in his career, advancing to Lead 3D Artist position, mentoring at Brick Academy and giving workshops at international archviz conferences.
Architectural photography and visualization
A related discipline also caught his attention – architectural photography. Not only does he capture photos of impressive buildings for the sake of the structures. He uses his photos as inspiration for his archviz work, as it helps him understand different environments too. In Alex’s words:
‘Photos are somewhat composed like archviz. The camera is a great tool for 3d artists to figure out light conditions, compositions, views – to see what would and wouldn’t work in archviz.’
At times, he uses his photos for references or matte-painting. This approach lends his work unique features, setting them apart from those visualizations that build on stock photos.
Alex finds inspiration from the talents he works with at Brick. He values the diverse perspectives they bring to the table, which contribute to a creative work environment. Additionally, he stays up-to-date with the latest industry trends by following the work of other archviz studios. This not only helps him keep pace with the constantly evolving industry but also sparks ideas for his own photographic work.
Moments worth capturing
Alex has a keen eye for modern office buildings and high-rises, which are often the primary focus of his photography. There are particular settings and scenes that fascinate him which he frequently includes in his art. One such example is the alluring atmosphere created by overcast skies. He is also intrigued by the phenomenon of fog, especially when it occurs in an urban environment. As foggy cityscapes are not as common in Barcelona, he relishes the opportunity to explore this moody view in Budapest.
Also, scenes and views that clients typically request within archviz commissions appear in Alex’s art. A notable example is a condition when the architecture is lit from behind or a rainy nighttime scene with shimmering water puddles reflecting the building’s lights.
Playful elements, people walking, going about their day, or a random splash of color amid the hazy scene lend his photos an exciting twist. Some of his shots deliberately focus on displaying movement in the foreground of the buildings, giving the photo a dynamic or abstract character.
Sprint and snap
Most of the time Alex plans ahead on Google Maps which buildings to visit, pinning down the mood he sees fit for the given structure. He might allocate 5-6 hours of his free time to take photos, going around the area of interest. But he is ready to divert from the plans if the opportunity presents itself.
On one particular occasion, Alex was on his way to the grocery store when it started to rain heavily, while it was growing dark. He had been eyeing an office building for some time, and now, with the building illuminated from within, it showed a different face. The pavement in front of the structure glistened, and roads were moderately busy – a scene surely catching the attention of an archviz artist/photographer. He hurried back home to grab his camera and capture the scene before it changed. Racing against time, he just arrived to take a couple of photos which became a token of this unexpected photo shoot.
In the near future, Alex plans to revisit certain buildings in Budapest that he previously captured in his photographs, as well as explore new locations. His ultimate goal is to compile a publication that will be accessible to the public, showcasing a wider selection of his photography.