The Shot Score: The Power of the AEC Shot List

Apr 24 2024

Shot Lists: AEC Strategies for Snapping Success


Whether you’re working with with a photographer or taking photos yourself in the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) industry, planning is key. In photography, that key planning can be referred to as a “shot list.” As with all planning, a shot list makes the whole process more efficient.


The Power of the Shot List


A shot list is a blueprint for capturing impactful project and people photos for your AEC marketing. It's like a roadmap that ensures you don't miss crucial shots and maximizes your time on-site. A shot list can be formed by breaking down your goals for the shoot:


  1. What things do you want to capture? This is broad for a reason. What subjects or topics do you want or need to shoot? From there, you can get more specific.

  2. What individual shots do you need? Think what you want from the subject or topic. If you want to capture the team, what kind of photography do you need from the team? If you want to capture a project in progress, what are you trying to convey from that photo? How should you take these photos in order to best achieve your desired results?

  3. Define ideal conditions. This could mean something as simple as setting a date and time for when you will do your photography work, but could get as granular as weather, daylighting, and setting. Maybe you don’t want to capture the team at work in a certain room because the colors are too dark. Think background, lighting, and more.

  4. Organize and map it out. In what order will you be photographing your subjects? You may need to communicate with your AEC team to figure out their schedules, availability, and what work will be done on which days. You can save yourself from wasted time and accidents if you know your most efficient route through a shot list.

  5. Share with your team. Communicate with leadership or any relevant individuals to refine, correct, or collaborate on your shot list. Some technical professionals might have better ideas than what you came up with, and leadership might have a concept or angle you overlooked. They should also know what day you’re planning on, so that they can feel prepared.


Make sure to have your shot list handy when you do your photography so that you don’t miss anything you’d planned. All in all, a shot list is important for four main reasons:


  • Organization: Prevents you from feeling overwhelmed and forgetting key shots.

  • Clarity: Defines your vision for the photos, ensuring everyone (you, colleagues, clients) is on the same page.

  • Efficiency: Helps you work quickly and avoid wasting time wandering aimlessly.

  • Quality: Increases the chances of capturing all the essential elements necessary for impactful storytelling.


You can never go wrong with tried and true planning. Plan a shot list so you can photograph exactly what you need.

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