What is Real Estate Photography?
Real Estate Photography is one of those evergreen career choices that ensure you never go out of work. People are always looking to move in or move out. This is why real estate agents are always looking for photographers to advertise or show the properties to prospective clients.
The best part is, if the photos clicked by you are good, the agents will call you back again and again. So, if you are new to real estate photography business or want to make a career in it, there are a few tips that you must follow. This real estate photography guide will help you click the most beautiful pictures to impress the agents as well as the clients.
Trends of Real Estate Photography
One of the trends that have been making the rounds in the real estate industry is 360 degree photography. Now the sole concept of such photography is showing a complete view of the subject. While regular photography can also give you the same effect when pictures are clicked from all sides but 360 degree photography gives a new experience altogether.
There are a few benefits of using 360-degree photography for capturing real estate.
1. This photography provides a rather immersive experience to your customers.
2. 360-degree photos create more impact.
3. Such photos give a better understanding of the dimensions of rooms.
4. In terms of looks, 360-degree pictures are more appealing.
Here are some amazing tips that will help you improve your real estate photography skills.
1. Scan the Property
Being a photographer, the first thing you are supposed to do is to perform a walkthrough of the property. Arriving with your equipment to a strange property for a photoshoot can be challenging if you are not familiar with it.
Once you do a recce of the property, you not only get familiar with it but you also get to know about the best angles and the places where there's good lighting.
2. Prepare Equipment and Shot List
It's your shoot today, you wake up an hour or two before the shoot time. You pack your equipment in a bag, skip bathing because you might get late, and you don't know if there's enough space in your memory card.
After reaching the shoot location, you realize that the battery is also low moments before realizing that your real estate photo shoot is doomed. Well, it can all be avoided if you make the preparations a night before.
Make sure that your batteries are charged, and your memory card has space.
Another thing you must do is make a list of all the shots you want to take. This is one of the most important parts of real estate photography prep.
Your main focus should be on taking note of the number of shots you want to take off the bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living room, garage and the front of the house.
3. Choose the Right time
For the best real estate photography, you have to choose the right time. Time has everything to do with the quality of photography if you are doing it in an outdoor setting or when your subject depends on the natural light.
For starters, make sure that the photoshoot is happening during daylight. If it's cloudy or too dark, you may not get the best results. You can also choose to take pictures during sunset.
4. Curtains Off for Better Light
During real estate photography, make sure that the curtains are off. Why?
Because the most real photoshoots are done in the natural light. If the curtains are off and the windows are open, you can get better lighting and you won't have to rely on the mercy of artificial lights.
If the interior is dark and there's low light, you can rely on the ISO. Just make sure that the picture is not too grainy.
5. Make the Most of Wide-Angle Lens
You don't want to use a prime lens and you don't want to use a telephoto lens. For real estate photography, your best bet is a wide-angle lens. The wide-angle lens gives you better coverage of the property and lets you take better shots. Using a wide-angle lens will help you capture a better view in general.
6. Use the Flash Right -
There will be times when you will have to depend on your camera's inbuilt flash or an external flash. But rather than using it directly on your subject, you can use it in such a way that your picture radiates more natural colours.
The way to do that is by reflecting the light off of the ceiling or something. The reflected light is not very hard and gives your subject a more natural look.
So if you are shooting inside a bathroom or a bedroom with low light, use the flash wisely and make the most out of it.
7. Lights On or Lights Off
This is one of those things that you will stumble upon while doing real estate photography (mainly shooting the exterior of property). Should you keep the lights of the house on or off? Well, while shooting the exterior of the house perfectly, timing is important as mentioned in the second point.
There are two rules that you can follow if you want to click better real estate photos.
a.) When the sun is up and there's ample lighting, keep the lights off.
b.) During sunset or dark, keep the lights on, especially those of windows and doors.
Keeping these rules in mind can give you a basic idea about the lights.
8. Check The White Balance
White balance is one of those things that photographers often forget to monitor or take care of while doing real estate photography. This is why a lot of their pictures don't do justice to the actual visuals of the property.
If the property is very bright as in white painted. A wrong white balance setting can make it look yellow. Or it can make it look pale. Wrong white balance settings can hold you back from getting the desired results.
9. Get Creative with Angles
If you have already made a list of shots and know what you are about to shoot, it can be easy to get creative. Don't just stick to the boring angles or the cliched ones. Take different shots. Experiment. The best part about being a photographer is that every photo you take is an improvement. So try out different angles to take photos from to make your pictures look more engaging and attractive.
10. Use A Tripod In Low Lighting Conditions
Most of the time it is difficult to set up all the lighting equipment for getting a couple of shots for a room where lighting is an issue. Hence rather than setting up lights, you need a tripod so that you can click long exposure shots without compromising with the image quality by using a higher ISO
Quality is one of the most important aspects of a real estate shoot. Hence you also need a tripod so that you can keep your images from getting blurred too.
11. Select A Professional Camera
By professional camera, we mean a camera with a full-frame sensor. A full-frame sensor will help you capture a lot more detail than a cropped sensor camera. Plus, full-frame cameras are always targeted towards professionals hence you also get all the necessary functionalities with it and more.
Since Real Estate Photography is usually done indoors, a full-frame camera can help you capture much more light that will eventually make your images look of superior quality.
12. Use ND Filters
When you are shooting outdoors, make sure that you are carrying ND (Neutral Density) Filters. These keep your images from appearing washed up due to the harsh sunlight.
13. Use Props or Add Them In Post
At the time of real estate photography, most of the houses are unoccupied and this is something that does not look very pleasing in the images. Hence even when though the house is not properly furnished, you need to use props to make it look like it is.
And to do so, many things can be done like placing flowers/plants all over the place. You can also try doing the same but in post. This is a lot less convenient, and with post-processing, you can achieve things that were very difficult in real life. For example. if you click an image of the living room with a chimney, you can always add a fire in the chimney later, but starting a fire just for a photo is difficult.
14. Choose The Right Camera Settings
To take great photos you need to make sure that you have used the right camera settings. And if you are someone who is new to the manual mode of the camera, here how you can nail the exposure in all your real estate photos.
Aperture: Aperture is the opening of the lens. The lower the f/stop number, the wider the aperture. With wide apertures, you can shoot low light conditions effortlessly. But wide aperture results in a shallower depth of field. so to get a wide depth of field and most of the parts of the image in focus, you need to use the aperture between f/7 to f/9. This is the perfect lens opening to emphasis on the different subjects.
Shutter Speed: The shutter speed is the duration of time the camera sensor is exposed to the light. You need to use a shutter speed between 1/50 and 1/2 of a second. And remember, if you are using a shutter speed which is at the lower end of the spectrum then you might need a tripod so that even your long exposure shots are crystal clear.
15. Use A Lower ISO
ISO is one of the 3 main settings of the camera in manual mode. This is basically the sensitivity of the sensor towards the light. In simple terms this means, the higher the ISO, the brighter your image. But while increasing the ISO, you are also introducing grains into the photo, which completely ruins the overall quality of the image. Hence it is always advised to use a lower ISO.
16. Colour Correct Your Photos
When you are shooting indoors with artificial lighting, you are bound to capture images with unrealistic colours. And as you might already know, the colours in an image play a major role in the look and feel of the whole images, especially in real estate photography.
The artificial lighting can make your photo look unnecessary warm (yellow) or even cold (blue). So to make sure that your image depicts the estate accurately you have to correct the colours of your images to make them resemble the real scene.
17. Fix Lens Imperfections
As we do not live in a perfect and ideal world, every photo that we click has some lens distortions. This is due to the fact that when we shoot with wide-angle lenses, even the straight lines in the photo appear bent due to the wide field of view of the lens.
Fixing thin might seem daunting, but that is not the case. You simply have to select the lens that you used to click the image and your editing software can automatically implement the required changes.
18. Bring Photos to Editing Table
As you know that being a photographer is not just about clicking pictures and giving the best one to the client. You have to make an effort towards giving the photos a premium touch. That is usually done through photo editing.
So, once you are done with the real estate photography, bring those photos to the editing table and make the required changes to it to make sure that the photos are of high-quality. Or you can take the help of photo editing services that give you the best deal in photo enhancement.
And if you are looking to get a real estate Photoshoot, then we here at Spyne can certainly help you with that.
Real estate photography is one of those types of photography that give you a chance to showcase the best of your work. Property photos are usually supposed to attract customers. So, keep that in mind while clicking the pictures.