Helen Binet

Helen Binet is an architectural photographer that exposes Architecture achievements, strength through lighting and shadows through her photographs. She chooses to capture certain elements or parts of an object which really allows a distinct view and understanding of what type of photographer she is. In most of her photos, Helen uses a monochromic effect which really conveys my chosen theme of a ‘contemporary building with an expressive massing thanks to the use of shadows and light’. In the photos provided, the use of light and shadow contrasts with those of Helen binets as she uses the shadow as the margin where as the focus of the image (figure 1)becomes the centre and creates shadows from the curved walls and the reflection of sunlight beaming of the glass windows. In contrast with my image (figure 2), the use of shadows was also expressed through the curves of the bricked wall as well as the light reflecting off the windows which gives it a ‘Helen Binet effect’. Among contemporary buildings and structures both lighting and the use of shadows help shape and change the way we frame the city and its architecture.

My photographs are an ideal reflection with a similarity in techniques both with monochromic colour of black as well as using Helens ideas of photography to express my chosen theme. In the images I photographed, I tried to use the same idea of focusing on parts of the building which in this case, her camera positioning creates shadow effect within the twirls of the stairs (figure 3). This is like my image not only with shape but also with positioning. The shadows are visualised travelling down the staircase which inspired me as there becomes a meaning to all her photographs. The focus isn’t really on the whole picture but rather creates her own technique which draws attention to the most ignored elements.

(Figure 1) Hélène Binet
Abbas El ( Figure 2)
Abbas El
( Figure 3 ) Hélène Binet
Hélène Binet

References: John Hejduk, Housing, Berlin, 1988, Foto: Hélène Binet

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