Knowing your camera’s functions inside out is the foundation for any great photograph – real estate or otherwise. But when you’re focusing on an interior shot, what you need to know and do gets a little more specific. For the best real estate photography, keep these six tips in mind.
1. The right photography kit
Wide angle lenses are the cornerstone of great property photography, especially for rooms with limited space. 16mm to 24mm lenses will give you the best perspective from a corner, but a standard lens will do the job for close-ups.
Adam Price, a KeyAGENT photographer, advises others to always take their flash guns to light up dark spaces in larger rooms. A remote shutter will also help tackle the problem of shakiness if you need to set a long shutter speed. And quality tripods with spirit levels are a godsend, as anyone who’s accidentally taken a slightly wonky photograph will tell you!
2. Tailored aperture and shutter speed
When shooting a whole room, you’ll need a large depth of field with a smaller aperture (bigger f-stop). But when there’s an interesting feature in a room, like a tap or banister, a bigger aperture will give you the shallower depth of field you’ll need to show it off.
Once your aperture is sorted, leave the shutter speed on as long as necessary to get the right exposure. A tripod is absolutely necessary for this. Using an f-stop of f11 on a full frame, and f9 on a cropped frame will ensure the whole room is in focus.
3. Perfect lighting
The soft, natural light of early morning and late afternoon is perfect for real estate photography. But if you’re shooting around these hours, you’ll need to make a judgement call with overhead bulbs, lamps or a combination.
Using an off-camera flash will help you illuminate darker areas. Remember: direct flash can often cause shadows, and can be seen on reflective surfaces, like kettles and toasters.
4. Thoughtful angles
Our photographers suggest positioning yourself in the corner of a room and shooting across at an approximate 45-degree angle. It gives you the opportunity to capture as much of the room as possible – which is the ultimate aim of any property photography project.
5. Comfortable staging
Picture yourself as the viewer. In most cases, they’ll want to envision themselves living comfortably in this space. You won’t be able to do extensive staging on most real estate photography jobs but attention to detail can work wonders. Look out for cushions to plump and chairs to straighten – and always keep sinks dish-free.
6. Clean post-production
Removing shadows, correcting lighting and adjusting contrast levels are small tweaks that will give your photography extra sparkle. If you can see sky outside a window and it’s not particularly summery, we’d also advocate brightening it up to show the property off to its best potential.
These are our tips for taking the best interior real estate photographs, but always experiment to get the best shot. Good luck!
About the Guest Contributor
As Head of Photographer Support for KeyAGENT, Thomas Shelley recruits photographers who operate in the real estate industry. With a community of 800 photographers, he manages contracted jobs for them across the UK.