Houston Public Library

Location Description

Located at 500 McKinney St, Houston, TX 77002, the Houston Public Library is a fantastic destination for photography enthusiasts. The building is situated in the heart of Houston's downtown, making it a convenient stop for anyone exploring the city. The library's location boasts stunning cityscapes and urban landscapes, providing photographers with endless opportunities for capturing unique images. Additionally, the Houston Public Library is surrounded by some of the city's most iconic architecture, such as the JP Morgan Chase Tower and the Pennzoil Place, which also offer excellent photo opportunities. Whether you are a professional photographer or someone who simply loves taking pictures, the Houston Public Library's location is perfect for a day of urban exploration and photography.

What to Photograph

As a photographer, you will find the Houston Public Library an exciting destination to capture stunning and unique images. The library's stunning architecture is the first thing that will catch your eye as you approach the building. With its glass-facade and curved lines, the library's architecture evokes the idea of a futuristic city. The interiors are equally impressive, with spacious rooms, high ceilings, and plenty of natural light flooding through the floor-to-ceiling windows. The library's minimalist design makes it an excellent option for those who want to capture architectural images with clean lines and a modern vibe. The library also houses an extensive collection of books, which gives you an opportunity to capture images of these books in their shelves, as well as bookworms engrossed in their reading. If you're lucky, you might capture some outdoor enthusiasts basking in the sun or taking a leisurely walk around the library's well-manicured lawns. Overall, the Houston Public Library offers myriad opportunities for you to capture unique and compelling images.


The Houston Public Library has a rich history that dates back to its founding in 1904. Through the years, the library has grown to become one of the most important research facilities in the South. The library's building, which is located in the city center of Houston, was constructed in 1976 and has since become an iconic landmark for the city of Houston. Constructed almost entirely of glass, the library's architecture is a testament to modern design principles and is a popular destination among photographers looking to capture stunning images of the building.

For those interested in photography, the Houston Public Library offers a few hidden gems that are not immediately obvious when first exploring the location. One of these is the HPL Express Discovery Green, which is a miniature version of the main library located inside Discovery Green Park. Though small, this location offers plenty of unique photo opportunities, including colorful murals and public art installations. Additionally, the library's Julia Ideson Building hides an incredible photo opportunity in its basement, where a collection of rare books are preserved in a temperature and humidity controlled environment. While access to this area is restricted, the library occasionally hosts special events and exhibitions where photographers can capture unique images of these rare book collections. Finally, the Houston Public Library also offers a variety of photography workshops, lectures, and classes that are sure to inspire and enhance your photography skills.

Nearby Festivals and Events

  • Houston Art Car Parade (April) - This parade showcases hundreds of unique cars, each one extravagantly decorated with art and sculptures, offering endless photo opportunities.
  • Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo (February-March) - The biggest livestock show and rodeo in the world features live performances from various artists and is a perfect occasion to capture images of carnival rides, food, and cowboy boots.
  • Sweetwater Seafood Festival (April-May) - Enjoy a variety of delicious seafood dishes while capturing photos of this annual event and the colorful crowd it attracts.
  • Houston Jazz Festival (August) - Photograph live jazz performances and the vibrant energy that emanates from the festival's crowd.
  • Houston Heights Woman's Club Holiday Home Tour (December) - A perfect chance to photograph beautifully decorated homes and capture the holiday spirit through your camera lens.

Note: Some of these events may be subject to change in the schedule. Please check with the official websites for updated information and details.


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  • Most of these locations are private property and may not allow visitors without calling first. They may also not allow portrait/pro photography. Always call ahead and ask permission before arriving.

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  • (Last updated: May 17, 2023 20:51:28)



    500 McKinney St
    Houston, TX 77002

    (17.8 mi / 27 mins)


    • Outdoors

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