Architectural Photographer of the year at the 2013 IPPA Awards

I had a great night tonight. I won Architectural photographer of the year at the  IPPA awards for the 2nd time. As always their was stiff competition. The quality of professional photographers in Ireland is of a very high standard.  I was also shortlisted in the overall awards for photographer of the year and in the landscape catagory.

Software Company by HJ Lyons Architects

House by PLM Architecture

House by PLM Architecture

Fit out HJ Lyons Architects

My Favorite images of 2012

2012 was a strange year in many ways. The 1st half was my toughest yet. I won’t bore you with the details but it really was getting to the stage that I was truly worried about my future. Picture sales were steadily rising but the thought of emigrating was becoming a real possibility. A possibility I was not exactly enthusiastic about. Ireland is where I’m from. It’s where my family live. It’s where I feel a sense of place. From a business point of view, I feel I have a true understanding of the Irish landscape. It’s where the majority of my commercial clients and fine art customers are based. It’s where the majority of my fine art images were taken. Of course the recession that has consumed us all moved the goalposts and you just have to do what you have to do.

Than suddenly in August something changed. I got a wonderful commission to photograph the Guinness Storehouse for a limited edition for the senior Diageo Execs and the Lord Mayor of Dublin. Than suddenly I was commissioned to photograph a series of landscapes for the new Quest Software offices in Cork. Followed by a number of sales of my large acrylic and plywood pieces of photographic art. Than came a number of really interesting architectural commissions. Than came my exhibition Duality which has proved to be a real success. This in turn has opened doors to amazing possibilities for the future.

Why did all this suddenly happen? The answer is I don’t really know. Most of the amazing things that happened in the last 5 months were unrelated. All I can say is thanks to the man above for everything that has happened. I feel so lucky to be doing something I truly love and after 4 years of pretty much constant 7 day weeks, all that hard work is starting to pay off.

Here are my favorite images of 2012. There are 12 in total. 6 architecture and 6 landscape. (Although 2 of the architecture images were actually part of the commission to produce a limited edition print  for Diageo. I just wanted to illustrate how my architectural work translates into my fine art work all the time.)

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Office Fitout

This funky fitout was such fun to photograph. There were loads of large graphic images around the office. I waited for the sunlight to work it’s way into the meeting area behind the the screen of hung threads. I loved the way it made the whole space very 3 dimensional.

House by Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects

This is my favorite image from a beautiful home designed by Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects. I was commissioned by the New York Times for a piece in it’s magazine. It’s a wonderful piece of contemporary architecture in Ireland.

House by PLM Architecture

This lovely house by PLM Architecture is located in picturesque West Cork near Bantry. The front of the house is very low with quite deep canopies. I wanted to show these nice clean lines and this is my favorite image.

House by PLM Architecture

The house is located beside lovely coastline and the architects made quite a seamless connection between the living space and the landscape. I wanted to show that conncection in this photo.

Guinness Storehouse

This photo is part of the selection of images I took for the Diageo commission. It wasn’t the final chosen image but I love it. It is the underground connection tunnel between 2 Guinness sites and runs underneath James’s Street

Guinness Storehouse

This is the actual image chosen for the limited edition. I used my Schneider 28mm Digitar XL lens to create a dramatic perspective and to show the strong influence from American industrial age architecture.

Stranded boat on a Wicklow Stream

I found this surreal location in Wicklow, thanks to a photographer friend. The place is very peaceful. The foliage on the trees acted as a giant softbox and the place was bathed in a wonderful soft light.

Forrest, Galway’s Bridge

This is the one of the images from my commission to photograph locations around the south of Ireland. They were used for huge vinyl wall coverings in the new Quest Software Offices in Cork.  I loved shooting the forrest locations. The first 2 here are 360° shots consisting of around 40 views and stitched together to create an image where the viewer is truly immersed in the scene. I plonked myself in the middle of all these moss covered boulders and hoped for the best. The image took about 2 hours to capture all 120 images. (4o views. 4 exposures for each. The longest exposure was 90 seconds!)

Gougane Barra Forrest Park

It’s pretty much impossible to get an idea of how the 360° panoramics look like on a computer screen. The final image was 13 x 3m high. Here is one of the images in place at the Quest office.

Tomies Wood, County Kerry

I love Tomie’s wood. It is a forrest located near Killarney in County Kerry and is full of old gnarly holly trees. They have amazing forms and I wanted to make viewers feel like they are standing there in the middle of it all.

Horse in the Wicklow Mountains

I love this photo I captured in the Wicklow countryside. As I took the shot a very friendly stallion and this beautiful white mare casually approached me. I knew by their movement that they were  friendly and just curious. All they wanted was to be petted. The mare at times was just inches from the front of the lens. I took a series of images shooting exposures to capture some movement in the horse so as to increase the degree of surrealism.

Dun Laoghaire Baths

This was the final photo taken for the Duality exhibition. It’s the Dun Laoghaire Baths in county Dublin. By far one of my favorite locations to photograph. I noticed these rock formations one evening while peering over the wall. I love all the soft lines, forming a contrast to the linear formations of the Baths and I used them to frame the shot.

Photographic Art. Sometimes size really does matter!!

Wow. It has been a hectic and fantastic Autumn. Loads of interesting things have happened.

I was commissioned to photograph the Guinness Storehouse for an exclusive limited edition for all the Diageo Senior executives and the Lord Mayor of Dublin. This is the photo chosen for the edition..

Guinness Storehouse at night

I had my first solo exhibition in the Copperhouse Gallery, which proved to be a great sucess and is opening new doors to other amazing projects. I decided it was vital to have the exhibition printed large and I mean really large. The largest piece was 9ft wide! I am a huge fan of cinema and I shoot in panoramic format the majority of time because like in cinema that is how we see the world. Once your peripheral vision is filled with an image and all the distractions are removed, than you are engrossed with the image, whether it be a movie on a large screen in a darkened cinema or a piece of art in a large size. It allows the viewer to be transported to another place and to become in that moment, part of the scene.  It is only than that the message of the image can be fully communicated.

Talking of large I was commissioned to photograph stunning locations all around the south of Ireland for huge vinyl wall coverings in Quest Software’s new offices in Cork. The largest 2 images are a massive 13m wide!! I had the added benefit of seeing them in the flesh because I did the architectural photography too. That was really exciting.

Recently I’ve had businesses buying large fine art limited edition prints on acrylic and polished birch plywood. They appreciate and understand that photographic art can dramatically improve the work space. This has benefits to the employer, in that happy staff make productive staff!! Of course what many business don’t know is because of these recognized benefits, most of the cost of the photos can be written off. You can read more about it here 

Most of my clients buying my framed photos now buy the largest possible size, once they see the different sizes and how the photos come alive once the peripheral vision is taken up my the photo. Than the viewer becomes part of the scene and that is one of my main aims.

Of course budgets dictate what you can afford to buy and I am biased but from an emotional point of view I would always buy as big as possible, because sometimes size really does matter!

Below you can see a gallery of photos printed and mounted in various formats.

Guinness Storehouse at night


LOHA – Pembroke Lane

LOHA – Pembroke Lane

When the New York Times contact you, you immediately sit up in your chair. So when the picture editor from the Times called I did just that. They had a beautiful house in Dublin, which they wanted photographed. The house was designed by world renowned Irish born architect Lorcan o’Herlihy from LOHA who is based in Los Angeles for many years.

I immediately said yes of course. The story behind the house was a lovely lady called Ella Flynn is the owner. She is also living in California for many years. Another ex pat living in the USA James Doyle from Doyle Herman Design Associates was the landscape architect. The New York Times  wanted to show the whole Irish American connection with their homeland.

I ended up photographing the house by LOHA over 2 days and Ella ended up spending much of that time with me in the house. I have to say, straight away I connected with her. I was so impressed that she decided LOHA to design and build a bespoke, contemporary and unique house in Dublin at a time that to most doesn’t make financial sense. Every part of the house speaks style and only the best materials and finishes were used by LOHA. The end result is more than just a home. It is a beautiful piece of art, which will be there for many years to come.

As an architectural photographer I love to photograph this type of structure. I love everything to do with design and I love to bring out the best of all those lovely shapes and forms in structures.

I got such a rush when a copy of the New York Times was posted to me. You can also check out the images in a larger size in the portfolio by clicking here