Oklahoma City Federal Building

Oklahoma City Federal Building

I am pleased to share one of my latest projects for Jockimo Advanced Architectural Products at Oklahoma City Federal Building. 

To view the full gallery, click on any of the images below.

Designed by Ross Barney+Jankowski Architects

This powerful landmark balances both security, access, and a local language of materiality incredibly well. This important landmark was built to replace the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building after the 1995 bombing where 168 people perished.

I was honored to be given access to document it through the lens of two quality products from Jockimo.

1) Jockimo Laminated Cast Glass Hand Rail

These Luminous panels punctuate the paths on the north and south of the building that lead to central public entrance. Providing moment's of pause along one's journey and an opportunity to reflect on both a past and a present.

2) Jockimo UL Ultimate Privacy™ Glass Flooring 

32 Glass Flooring Panels were used to create this bridge unites the halves of this building at the central atrium. They project an image of fragility while simultaneously expressing resilience in their utility. There is also a steadfastness in the simple metal framing that elegantly piece these panels of translucent panels together.

This short promotional film was also a product I produced for Jockimo. If it were possible to film more here, I would take it. 

I want to personally thank those who provided their help with coordinating access and permission in order to make this project happen. Special care and attention was made throughout this project to respect the men and women who continue to serve at this facility.


Selective Color Correction - A Before and After

Remember back in college, when your professor didn't care that you also had 3 other assignments due the same week as their 10pg paper and how they weren't thrilled to hear of your hard drive failing at the last minute. Well in Architectural Photography, your client doesn't always have the luxury of waiting for the best time of year to document their project and unless your a demi-god, it's not likely that you control the weather. So what do you do if say... it is the middle of a drought, in a southern state, that has dry grass?

Enter Selective Color Correction as part of the equation of post-production. This can be a lengthy or short process depending on the retouch artist and the complexity of the image. That's why a client's input on their final angles is critical to saving both time and money.

While this isn't a tutorial, it is a demonstration of three steps I used for a recent project.

Step 1: Initial Post production Develop the photo as far as possible before special retouching.

Not a bad image, but we don't want to distract our audience with dead grass.

Step 2: Color correct only the area you want to affect. This can be in Photoshop or other software, but it really depends on the complexity of the image.

Now that's better, but there's a little overgrowth that we can help

Step 3: Clean up and final retouch. This is where you take the areas that were affected by the selective color correction and you blend un even areas of blotchy color, eliminate unwanted elements, and generally make the image look like it was never retouched in the first place. (Unless your a pixel peeper, and if you're looking that hard, the I didn't do a great job of making a compelling image to begin with.)

We've blended the grass, eliminated the traffic cone by the doors, and weeded the path. You may notice some areas that can be cleaned up further, but this will be used as a draft for client review.

HDR and Tonemapping for reality: Pt 1

I'm still recovering from a serious hard drive fail this week, pushing many things back. But as I am finally back up and running, I've run across a perfect example of when to use HDR to re-create the reality of a place. Many have already experienced "HDR" as an option for creating unique highly artistic images of places, people, and things.

An Example of Artistic HDR-Tonemapping.

However in Architecture, authenticity is king. That's where a good eye and memory for a place becomes irreplaceable as you edit your work.

I'm presently working on a series of photos for my favorite Architectural Glass Manufacturer and Client, Jockimo. They have a beautiful installation of their product as a bridge inside the Oklahoma City Federal Building. The challenge however is that while daylighting was pretty balanced compared to other spaces, the interior lighting just can't match the same intensity of the exterior. Even on an overcast day, like the one I  worked with.

Why is this a problem? In a simplified explanation, the human eye, in concert with the brain, has a terrific ability to process a high dynamic range of light. However cameras have a much harder time mixing the range of light and color that we perceive. In many places you'll have a small range of light (or low contrast), either it's dark or it's bright. However for many interior spaces, the range differs greatly between interior lights and sunlight.

Essentially the camera has to choose to capture a set range of light. Say on a scale of 1-24 stops, the human eye can see about 14 stops of light. The BEST digital Cameras will be able to see about 11 of that 24 (depending on if it's film, digital, or the actual size of the medium it's capturing the image on). That's why when you photograph someone inside you don't want them to stand in front of a window. (if you're not using a flash). Click here For some great educational material that really goes in depth on both dynamic range and the perception of color.

Interior ExposureIntermediate ExposureExterior Exposure





Traditionally a photographer has to "compromise" to photograph for the darker range (let the outdoors be blown out), or the lighter range (things inside get uncharacteristically muddy and dark). With the advent of brilliant software like Photomatix and HDR EFEX Pro you can bring the light back into range.

Final Processed HDR-Tonemapped Image

Many artistic images can create stunning and beautiful image by going to extremes. However, when telling the story of Architecture and Commercial Products, it doesn’t help your client sell their product when you can't tell how a final product actually looks and feels. Your image still deserves the attention it deserves to make it beautiful, things like, punch color or contrast a tad, but you don’t want to give a false sense of the product.

By the way, I have to say that working with the kind folks there was a particular treat. I know they've been through a lot and I appreciate their kindness and trust in allowing me to document such a fantastic place.