2019 Miami Workshop Recap | Photography Unfolded

2019 Miami Workshop Recap

 In Workshop Recaps

At the beginning of February, we headed south, for our first workshop in Miami! While most of you might have been to Miami for the warmth and the beaches, there’s a lot of architecture by world-class firms. It’s perfect for a two-day workshop, and we even found two great skylines views!

The most interesting area for architecture is the Miami Design District, where we started on Saturday morning. It’s a high-end shopping area north of downtown Miami. While it might not sound interesting at first, the outdoor mall with pedestrian streets is lined with luxury stores that all have great designs.

Our first stop was the City View Garage (Leong Leong and Iwamoto Scott). The cladding of the garage is just stunning, with gold fins on the west side and blue triangles on the east side. Both are great for detail shots!

Our next stop was Buckminster Fuller’s Fly Eye’s Dome. The dome was great to shoot with the clouds and the palm trees. If you go inside, there’s also a spiral staircase going down to the garage.

By the dome is an interesting canopy, worth shooting straight up. The glass is blue, it’s not a bad white balance!

Next, the Dior store and its subtle panels, reminding of paper sheets. Again, the clouds were a great backdrop.

Facing the Dior store, there is the Louis Vuitton store and its facade covered in patterns. It’s not easy to shoot, but you can get some great details if you zoom in isolate interesting patterns.

Just down the street was the Tom Ford store. It has a lot of lines and triangles and with the sun, some interesting tree shadows.

Our next stop was the second parking garage of the day, Museum Garage. It’s a collaboration between 4 firms (WORKac + Nicolas Buffe + Clavel Arquitectos + K/R and J. MAYER. H.), each designing part of the cladding. It’s a pretty eccentric design, but you can find some interesting details.

The backside of the garage looks very different, with that interesting pattern of colored windows.

Across from the garage is the Institute of Contemporary Art (Aranguren & Gallegos architects). The facade is beautiful, with triangular metal panels that are great to shoot and change with the light.

At the entrance, there are large letters spelling out ICA and MIAMI. They can be interesting to shoot against the textured wall in the background.

Continuing our journey through the Design District, we stopped at the Rick Owens store. The brutalist, geometric facade has some great details. And the tree shadows are just an added bonus.

Angie found some colored ceilings on the way to our next stop. Interesting patterns and colors!

One of our favorite spots in the Design District is the Nuage Promenade (Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec), metal and glass canopies on one of the pedestrian streets. The colors and patterns are perfect for abstracts!

Our last stop before lunch was the Dash Fence (Marc Newson), at the Design and Architecture High School. When you look at it straight on, it doesn’t look like much, but if you get closer and shoot from the side, then you get those amazing curves and waves.

After lunch, we headed to Miami Beach and the new Convention Center (Arquitectonica). The facade has these white panels that create great shapes, especially when shooting with a telephoto. You can even include the palm trees for some interesting contrasts!

However, if you get close to the glass and use your wide-angle lens, you can get some great reflections!

Just south of the Convention Center is the New World Center (Frank Gehry). Unfortunately, a private event prevented us from shooting inside, but the outside has some interesting white shapes, unusual for Gehry!

Since we had a little more time than expected, we headed to our third parking garage of the day, 1111 Lincoln (Herzog & De Meuron). The brutalist structure isn’t easy to photograph but the shapes of the pillars and different floors are interesting.

Then we went south to Hobie Island to photograph the skyline at sunset. We had some great clouds and the sun made an appearance just before sunset to give us a little color.

With the fast-moving clouds, it was great for long exposures too!

We ended the day with dinner nearby. On Sunday, we met early to go shoot at sunrise from Watson Island. While our blue hour was almost ruined by a giant cruise ship that was hiding most of the skyline, it ended up moving and adding some interest to our shot.

After sunrise, we walked over the bridge back to Miami and our first architectural location of the day was One Thousand Museum (Zaha Hadid).  While the tower isn’t finished, you can already shoot the podium part, especially in the back. The light was just amazing on the patterns of the facade.

After breakfast, we headed south to Miami’s Financial District. Our first stop there was the SLS Brickell Hotel & Residence (Arquitectonica). Shooting from up close, the balconies create fantastic lines and patterns. The first few levels have a pink underside, adding a touch of colors to the shots.

A block east is Colonnade Plaza (Minoru Yamasaki). The columns and the canopy are great for straight-up shots and symmetry.

Walking north to the Brickell District, we stopped by Brickell Heights Condos (Arquitectonica) and interesting facade.

Our next stop was Solitair Brickell (ADD Inc & Stantec), with, once again, some interesting balconies, especially from up close.

Our last stop of the workshop was the Brickell City Centre (Arquitectonica). The outdoor mall has an amazing canopy that is great to shoot, both wide and in detail shots.


We had a great time in our Miami Workshop and we had a great group! As you can see, there’s more than meets the eye. Miami has a lot of great locations and we’ll definitely be back next year!

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