36 Tantalizing Photos Of Textures

Rough. Smooth. Sandy. Variegated. Machined. Organic. They're the textures all around us, and for this week's Shooting Challenge, you captured them with a keen eye.

Winner: Obligatory Lego


Canon 60D — f/10 — 1" — ISO100 — 75mm

Mike Case

Subway Ceiling

I like simple. I wanted to focus only on texture, so I chose to get rid of color in this photo. Texture is my concentration in photos, it is what I am fascinated with when I make pictures and put them out into the world on the internet. So when I saw this challenge I thought, "okay Ava, they are asking you to do what you do every day. easy...right?" But suddenly I got very nervous because when i take the pictures every day it is for myself not because someone asks me. I felt annoyed, like i was about to get a bad case of photographer's block. Then on my way into work that morning, I looked up on my way down the subway stairs: "Wow!" I thought, "maybe i should pull out my camera..." iPhone 5s. I held the phone straight below, and parallel to, the slanted ceiling at the entrance of a subway stairwell. I made it black and white and some contrast added on the computer.

Ava Sjöberg



I walked out to the front yard to try to get some cool pictures of the snow, but it had started to melt and lost it's beauty. Ready to give up, I looked down and saw the cool pattern the ice was making on the front steps of my porch. Thinking that this would go great with the Texture theme of this week, I snapped a few shots. This was taken with my Canon t3i with a 50mm fixed lens. 1/30 sec at f/8.0, ISO 1600. Light touch up done in Lightroom (white balance/tone curve/crop).

Ed Bindl



Old jeans taken close up.

John Pamplin

Bubble Wrap


I work in San Francisco in a west-facing office, which catches the sunset beautifully. Despite not having a very good camera on hand, I used the front-facing 10MP camera on my Droid 4 in a macro-setting, I knew I'd be able to use the intense light to my advantage. Everyone loves bubble wrap, so I thought that would be a interesting subject, especially given the multitude of surfaces on each bubble.

I tried a number of different geometries for the bubble wrap. For example, I thought that folding it on itself would be interesting, but I found that you lost the detail of the individual bubbles since there was no contrast. Eventually I just held it up and let it fold a little to give it some movement. After transferring the images to my laptop, I realized that the color was distracting so I changed it to black-and-white in Photoshop. That was the only adjustment that I made.


Natalie Hinkel



White Sands New Mexico. Fuji X-pro, 35mm

Doug Green

Rock Meets Water


No description given.

Donald Ungerman



Hi, this is my first submission to the shooting challenge, I really wanted to participate and thought this was a good chance. The photo I'm submitting was taken during a quick site visit to a building in which the company I work for had plans to relocate. Unfortunately for reasons beyond comprehension and against all predictions the office was shot down a week before the holidays and all hopes to move into the new space dissipated completely.

I took part in the design of the new space and always liked the demolition process in this sort of transitions. For the photo the subject is the building itself as it stands empty and almost yearning for occupancy. The texture which caught my attention, however, was the sliced concrete wall revealing the composition of the mix and what basically holds together the entire structure -a bunch of compacted mortar and sand. Something I'm familiar to when producing sections and plans where all I use is a graphic hatching to represent concrete.


Unfortunately we didn't bring our nice DSLR at the time so I used my iPhone 5s camera and captured the image as I do with anything that catches my eye. I'm hoping I'll have a chance to go back to the building and maybe set up a nicer photo, but for now I hope this is a good entry which adds value to the challenge.

Julio Martinez



This photo is the speaker cover of my Kustom Arrow 16DFX guitar amplifier. I wanted to find a repeating texture just laying around my house, and this one was the most dynamic one I found. The lighting is all natural coming from my kitchen window. The contrast has been enhanced in Photoshop. I took it with a Canon Rebel T2i, at f3.5, 1/25 sec shutter speed. Thanks for the opportunity to submit! I'm a graphic designer in Abilene, TX and I'm starting to branch out into semi-pro photography.

Sam Weaver

Galaxy In A Pan


Last night I sautéed green beans using butter, salt, pepper, and two cloves of crushed garlic. I have a habit of not cleaning my dishes right after I make a meal so I put soap and water in the pan to let it soak over night. This morning I found these crazy textures. I see a whole new galaxy in it. My equipment was a tripod, 5dmkII, 24-105 f4L lens at 105mm, aperture f9, shutter 10 seconds, and ISO 500.

Aaron Cheney



This is a photo of a new addition to the Penn State HUB (A large area for students to study, eat, and work on group activity). The marble caught my eye with the harsh shadows coming from the open door. I was taking a tour of the construction site for a news story, and spent way too much time working on getting this shot. I was working with a Nikon D7000, standard 18-105mm lens, aperture around f4.5 I believe. The shutter speed was a fairly standard 1/60, but being 6'2" I was hunched over at quite the angle. The color temperature might seem really blue, it is really just a very unique color of granite.

Jack Lukow



Pulling my lint trap from my dryer reminded me of this contest... so I peeled a little corner of lint off of one panel and went crazy. Canon T2i, 18-55mm kit lens, edited in Lightroom 4.4.

Amaro Tuninetti

In the Garage


I found a rich texture right on the floor of the garage. The image was captured with a Nokia 635, and then globally corrected for color, contrast and brightness in Paint.net, as well as resized to the indicated pixel resolutions.

Jonas Demuro

Books for Sale


Hello. After years of following the Giz Shooting Challenge, i finally managed to submit a picture of my own. I mostly do street photography in Paris, France, for about 4-5 month.

For the challenge, I went out and started shooting a lot of marble, pavement, looking for an interesting texture, but nothing was really convincing. I was ready to give up but I passed by the street booksellers that are near boulevard Saint Michel, and i thought that, alone in the frame, the books formed a nice texture. Hope you'll think it too. Shot with a Nikon D3100 at 1/160 and f/6,3, 55mm, and developed in Lightroom.


Vincent Cadoux



I never thought bread could look so weird that close. I tried some stuff before the bread, such as dog food, leaf, sponge and a brush. The bread came up better, it is almost like I was entering a mini world. I shot with my Canon 70D, MP-E 65mm macro lens, 1/100, F11 and ISO800

Alecio De Paula

Rusty Face


This spare wheel has been sitting in our garden for the last year rusting away. I haven't given it any attention until I realised that the texture of the rust would prove to be a great subject for this week's shooting challenge. I tweaked the contrast and saturation in Picasa.

Ben Clayton



Aerial photo taken east of Colorado Springs at, oh, probably 2,000ft above terrain. I love looking at farmland from above; fields contain such a gorgeous blend of man-made geometry and natural texture. Canon 6D, EF24-105mm f/4L IS lens at 65mm, ISO 400, f/7.1, 1/4000. Processed in Lightroom for mild crop, sharpening and contrast adjustments.

Chase Hessman

Some Coat


My buddy's winter coat. Sony RX-100M2; ISO 160; f/4; 1/500.

Costas Kitsos

Holland Park


I love capturing textures and I happened to come across some beautiful one and I didn't have my Sony camera to hand, so my iPhone had to do. I live in London and the photo has been taken around Holland Park in London, on a side road, with my iPhone.

Roxana Stoica

Popcorn and Caterpillars


This pillow has been on out couch for months and I never really looked at it until searching around the house for interesting textures. To me, it looks like popcorn and caterpillars which, while potentially comfortable, would be of doubtful use as a throw pillow. Taken with a Nikon D7100 & Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 @ f/9 and 1/10th.

Win Barker

Weathered Frame


Weathered window frame. Nikon D7000, 28mm Full Frame Prime Lens, f/4.5, ISO 1000. I used an iPhone 6 flash to aid in the lighting.

Jason Simmonds

Technicolor Fence


Needed to go somewhere and get outside before the snow arrives tonight. Headed to Historic Ellicott City (MD) with an eye out for texture. There is a lot of texture there in old buildings and iron gates. Found this wooden fence and liked the texture of the paint on the texture of the wood, and how they don't entirely work together in harmony. Canon Rebel SL1, f/5.6, ISO 800, 1/160

Cheryl MacLean

Surrounding Art


This is a section of a large frame I have hanging in my dining room. I cropped the photo to focus on one part of the image. No major touch ups performed. Using Sony Nex6 with 1650mm zoom lens at 39mm zoom, F 28, 0.8s shutter speed ISO 100.

Marc Solomon

Paint Swirl


I had purchased some paint a few weeks ago to finish up a project for the house. I didn't get around to it until this weekend. The paint had separated quite a bit and as I was stirring it, I noticed the swirls and thought it made a pretty cool texture. I used an extension tube to get closer to the paint. I was paranoid that I was going to get paint on my lens as I was leaning back and forth to get the focus just right.

Dylan Adams

IKEA Fake Grass


I preferred to use a shallower depth of field and lighting to add some dynamic. The fine edge of the blades on the right are in focus. But I felt the texture was more noticed by the distance and staggering between the blades, which I accentuated it via light and depth of field. Speedlight from above left, focus set to top right of the fake grass. Tripod for stability and prevention of motion blur.




Peanuts! In order to keep the squirrels away from the bird feeder, I feed them raw peanuts. Not sure this is working - I have even fatter squirrels and less money as I am spending it all on feeding the starving creatures. Before their nightly dinner, I was able to get a few shots of their food. I took this shot with: Fuji f100fs — f/4 — 1/2" — ISO100 — 31mm — +1 Exposure Compensation.

Toni Case

Knock on Wood


I live in Des Moines, IA. We've had a pretty mild winter so far (KNOCK ON WOOD), and this past weekend had a glorious 50 degree day. It's really fun to see everyone get outside immediately when it gets near 50 during the winter season. This happens everywhere in the upper midwest, and Iowa is no exception. Went to Grey's Lake just south of downtown Des Moines, and while I was initially looking to shoot some eagles with my A5100 with an old film 70-210mm lens, I came across these nice empty trees instead. Captured something simple to go with the simple joy of being outside.

Jason Harmer

San Francisco's Grand Canyon


My technique was to simply try and get as close as I could to fill the entire frame while retaining focus. I wanted a few different textures which I captured with the wetness from the water, the layers of peeled metal, and roughness of the cracks. The craters look so deep up close that it reminds me of the Grand Canyon for some reason. Tourists are too focused on getting the Golden Gate Bridge that they never stop to notice the beauty in small details like this. Just shows that mother nature can break down anything we build, no matter how sturdy we think it is and long it will last. Being an SF local, I was showing my out of town cousin the bridge, (of course) and I noticed these rusted chains. I took a photo of it on my phone and Instagrammed it.

Kitty Peters

Stucco Button


So...for this one I busted out my M3 and stayed close to home. What you're seeing is my doorbell surrounded by stucco. I waited until I had a nice balance of light across our entryway and am rather pleased with how fine the stucco detail turned out, seeing as I couldn't focus the lens any closer than 1 meter away.

Scott Swisher

Face of an Old Rock


No story really. Just the face of a rock I've seen a million times and have always thought was interesting.

Raz Akhter

Brushed Steel, Or Something


A quick photo of the texture on my external hard drive. I think it's brushed steel or something. I used regular room lighting but had the hard drive angled in such a way to show contrast in the steel. Equipment: Nikon D600, 105mm f2.8 and a MeFOTO tripod

Nicholas Shirley

Toothbrush View


This texture is the screen in my bathroom window. It's surprisingly refreshing to have a window in front of my sink instead of a mirror. It's nice to look outside rather that at myself while I brush my teeth. Helps take my mind to a good place.

Victoria Zengo

Old Plank Seat


I'm currently deployed as a volunteer with an NGO is East Surat, Philippines - delivering aid to victims of Typhoon Hagupit. On a ride on a small river boat to deliver water purification systems to a remote barangay I noticed this old plank seat set across the boat in front of me. It had obviously seen lots of use and been weathered over many years and untold number of trips up and down East Philippine rivers...Shot with a Canon 5D Mk II & 24-105-L lens

Armando Ruggeri

Paw Print


I was outside shoveling after a brief snow shower with my dog, Tucker, and saw how his paw prints looked in the snow. I loved how he left some flakes behind inside of his prints and decided to capture it in a picture. Enjoy! :-)

Alison Duthie

Hatteras Island


My husband and I spent some time walking the beach on Hatteras Island yesterday. Saw lots of seashells, sand patterns, waves, but a dead tree caught my eye for this contest. Photo taken with Samsung Galaxy Note II, then cropped.

Anne Masterson

Cymbal Ripples


I've always loved the texture of my Ziljian K cymbal. It's hand-hammered, making it look very alien up close. Arrakis anyone?

Christopher Kayfield

It was so hard to choose a winner this week, even though, at Gizmodo along with the rest of the internet, Lego more or less has the power to trump every other topic. Hierarchy starts with Lego up top, followed by Star Wars, kitty photos, gross dishes made by KFC, quizzes about which Starbucks location is most you, and then just a sea of Facebook/Twitter/tumblr. Find the wallpapers on flickr.


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