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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Architecture, Real-Estate & Buildings 
Thread started 15 Jul 2010 (Thursday) 14:37
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A thread for real estate, architectural, and interior design photography

 
PECE ­ Photo
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Post edited over 3 years ago by PECE Photo. (4 edits in all)
     
Jan 10, 2016 01:45 |  #7636

rgs wrote in post #17851697 (external link)
What is limiting is your steadfast determination to work hand held. You are limiting yourself to hand holdable shutter speeds - which is why you have trouble balancing with outside light on a cloudy day. You are also limiting yourself to daytime work. No twilight or night photography because you can't hand hold it. You are making it more difficult to use multiple and/or off camera flash. You are probably limiting the precision with which you frame a room and, regardless of what you think, making brackets that can be blended effectively hand held is VERY difficult. You can always quickly remove the camera from the tripod when really needed, but, without the tripod, you lose all of the capability listed above. And a monopod won't help. That's for sports and wildlife.

All this you are sacrificing because you think you need to put a camera in a tight place. Put your camera on a tripod. Tether you camera to your phone or tablet with DSLR Controller (external link). Mount the phone to the tripod with this (external link) (I mount mine to my center column). You can put your camera in any tight spot (or anyplace else) you want and use the phone remote to control all the functions.

Scenes change but, to be consistent, the camera height (which should really be about the middle of the chest - not eye level) should remain the same much of the time. It is about control - just not the same kind as a studio.

Now, if you will permit me, I'm going to get personal and I hope you will accept my remarks in the spirit in which they are intended - that is to help and not to offend.

You seem to respond to criticism with defensiveness and excuses. You've been given some very good advice on this thread from some experienced photographers who know how to produce what clients want. Take advantage of their help instead of drawing artistic lines. These guys know their stuff. Real estate photography has one purpose - to sell the property. Although we want it to look great, it's not about artistic integrity or individuality. First you must produce what your clients (please listen to their criticisms and don't argue with them - they know what sells) want. If you can add some more creative work after the nuts and bolts work is finished, that's a big plus. But first, provide the client with standard, clean, top quality real estate photography that meets the client's needs.

And don't be in such a hurry to trip the shutter - take time to see first. Have you ever used a view camera? You really should if you have access to one. It's great discipline for both the eye and the technique.

It is easy to think the clients will know what images will work best for them. And of course the truth is, who knows maybe they do. But in my experience they really don't know what the best types of images are to sell a home. Of course I'll have to back that statement up...

First off, what are the best, most sellable images you can possibly think of for marketing a home? They would probably look something a lot like a high end resort photograph. A romantic evening with a sunset on a balcony with a good looking couple opening a bottle of wine. Models will sell spaces. They will sell the lifestyle of the home/community and they will make people get emotional about wanting to live in the home. It is very hard to argue with this because of what we see everyday when we open magazines. We know what works, it's all right there in front of us. Yet, how many agents ask for models in their shoots? It approaches zero. I do know the mls would not permit this, but you have to realize, the mls is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the marketing of a home. Brochures, emails, online marketing could all use models in imagery if they desired. The real amazing part is this would not even cost anything extra in many cases; somebody could bring in their sister to read a book on the couch for 5 minutes of posing. Yet again, never done, never requested, hell, never even mentioned and not on the radar of any real estate agent. I guess that will be exhibit one.

Exhibit two we can look to what types of media homeowners are smitten with. By and large it is magazines like dwell and this style of imagery. And, if we look at the imagery within dwell, we see a stark difference between it and the agent driven imagery that ladens the mls. Dwell photographs tend to show less ceiling, I'd say they are lit well and with subtlety. They focus more on details. There is NEVER an HDR image to be found, at least not an overdone one. They give you a good feel for the home and depict it in its best possible light by not attempting to capture entire, large spaces all in a single photograph. And they are staged with much more sophistication. Keep in mind, the people curating the photos for dwell and its photographers are the best in the business. They know how to make a house look appealing better than anyone. In fact, I would say a good way to describe their job is to make these houses look as delectable as possible to gain interest and readership. Yet, Agents are focused on one thing. "Big". That's it. That is the scope of their photographic sophistication. They don't put the time into pondering the fact that if you show a space with an ultra wide angle lens to increase its apparent size, the image is going to be 35 percent ceiling. Of course they don't, that's the photographer's job. But they should get In better habit of relinquishing control, and I think dwell imagery and mls imagery would start to become less disparate.

The exhibits could go on and on, but those are the first two that came to mind. In the end people will believe what they want of course. I just think to be of the opinion that agents are experts in a field of art and aesthetics is like thinking joe Biden would be a good candidate to run a fashion show.


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David ­ Arbogast
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Post edited over 3 years ago by David Arbogast. (2 edits in all)
     
Jan 10, 2016 03:49 |  #7637

EDIT: My initial post below is all wrong - I was going off memory, but after taking the time to re-watch the videos I realized the fault in my mental record. It just goes to reinforce all the more the criticalness of using a tripod throughout the entire shoot (not just the key money shots)!

_______________

A couple years ago I was considering getting into RE photography and purchased Scott Hargis' excellent RE video tutorials. He promotes the idea of shooting mostly handheld with good speedlite lighting techniques and doing only 2-3 tripod shots of the primary interior spaces. His work is excellent. So handheld shooting is possible, but does require good lighting techniques and strategies.


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digirebelva
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Jan 10, 2016 08:41 as a reply to  @ David Arbogast's post |  #7638

Then we must have looked at different videos, cause his video series on re lighting has him constantly using a tripod, even for exteriors, so I'm not sure what you looked at. How do you balance low light ambient with flash handheld once shutter speeds get below 1/30...?

I choose to not be a run and gun shooter, am I going to be in and out of a house in 15 minutes, nope, but with experience comes speed. I can do most shoots in 30 to 60 minutes using a tripod and off camera flash. Unless a space is very large, you learn from experience where your light(s) should go, and about what power you should use. And the newer crop of agents who are more tech savvy, are able to produce what a lot of fun and gunners turn out, so why should hire them, if there is no difference in image quality..?


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Jan 10, 2016 11:31 |  #7639

PECE Photo wrote in post #17852078 (external link)
It is easy to think the clients will know what images will work best for them. And of course the truth is, who knows maybe they do. But in my experience they really don't know what the best types of images are to sell a home. Of course I'll have to back that statement up...

First off, what are the best, most sellable images you can possibly think of for marketing a home? They would probably look something a lot like a high end resort photograph. A romantic evening with a sunset on a balcony with a good looking couple opening a bottle of wine. Models will sell spaces. They will sell the lifestyle of the home/community and they will make people get emotional about wanting to live in the home. It is very hard to argue with this because of what we see everyday when we open magazines. We know what works, it's all right there in front of us. Yet, how many agents ask for models in their shoots? It approaches zero. I do know the mls would not permit this, but you have to realize, the mls is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the marketing of a home. Brochures, emails, online marketing could all use models in imagery if they desired. The real amazing part is this would not even cost anything extra in many cases; somebody could bring in their sister to read a book on the couch for 5 minutes of posing. Yet again, never done, never requested, hell, never even mentioned and not on the radar of any real estate agent. I guess that will be exhibit one.

Exhibit two we can look to what types of media homeowners are smitten with. By and large it is magazines like dwell and this style of imagery. And, if we look at the imagery within dwell, we see a stark difference between it and the agent driven imagery that ladens the mls. Dwell photographs tend to show less ceiling, I'd say they are lit well and with subtlety. They focus more on details. There is NEVER an HDR image to be found, at least not an overdone one. They give you a good feel for the home and depict it in its best possible light by not attempting to capture entire, large spaces all in a single photograph. And they are staged with much more sophistication. Keep in mind, the people curating the photos for dwell and its photographers are the best in the business. They know how to make a house look appealing better than anyone. In fact, I would say a good way to describe their job is to make these houses look as delectable as possible to gain interest and readership. Yet, Agents are focused on one thing. "Big". That's it. That is the scope of their photographic sophistication. They don't put the time into pondering the fact that if you show a space with an ultra wide angle lens to increase its apparent size, the image is going to be 35 percent ceiling. Of course they don't, that's the photographer's job. But they should get In better habit of relinquishing control, and I think dwell imagery and mls imagery would start to become less disparate.

The exhibits could go on and on, but those are the first two that came to mind. In the end people will believe what they want of course. I just think to be of the opinion that agents are experts in a field of art and aesthetics is like thinking joe Biden would be a good candidate to run a fashion show.

Thanks for posting your thoughts, you made some good points here.




  
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David ­ Arbogast
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Post edited over 3 years ago by David Arbogast.
     
Jan 10, 2016 11:34 |  #7640

digirebelva wrote in post #17852322 (external link)
Then we must have looked at different videos, cause his video series on re lighting has him constantly using a tripod, even for exteriors, so I'm not sure what you looked at. How do you balance low light ambient with flash handheld once shutter speeds get below 1/30...?

I choose to not be a run and gun shooter, am I going to be in and out of a house in 15 minutes, nope, but with experience comes speed. I can do most shoots in 30 to 60 minutes using a tripod and off camera flash. Unless a space is very large, you learn from experience where your light(s) should go, and about what power you should use. And the newer crop of agents who are more tech savvy, are able to produce what a lot of fun and gunners turn out, so why should hire them, if there is no difference in image quality..?

No we watched the same ones. My problem is I hadn't watched them in over a year and was going off memory. Grr. My bad! Sorry about that. :oops:


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rgs
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Jan 10, 2016 11:41 |  #7641

PECE Photo wrote in post #17852078 (external link)
It is easy to think the clients will know what images will work best for them. And of course the truth is, who knows maybe they do. But in my experience they really don't know what the best types of images are to sell a home. Of course I'll have to back that statement up...

First off, what are the best, most sellable images you can possibly think of for marketing a home? They would probably look something a lot like a high end resort photograph. A romantic evening with a sunset on a balcony with a good looking couple opening a bottle of wine. Models will sell spaces. They will sell the lifestyle of the home/community and they will make people get emotional about wanting to live in the home. It is very hard to argue with this because of what we see everyday when we open magazines. We know what works, it's all right there in front of us. Yet, how many agents ask for models in their shoots? It approaches zero. I do know the mls would not permit this, but you have to realize, the mls is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the marketing of a home. Brochures, emails, online marketing could all use models in imagery if they desired. The real amazing part is this would not even cost anything extra in many cases; somebody could bring in their sister to read a book on the couch for 5 minutes of posing. Yet again, never done, never requested, hell, never even mentioned and not on the radar of any real estate agent. I guess that will be exhibit one.

Exhibit two we can look to what types of media homeowners are smitten with. By and large it is magazines like dwell and this style of imagery. And, if we look at the imagery within dwell, we see a stark difference between it and the agent driven imagery that ladens the mls. Dwell photographs tend to show less ceiling, I'd say they are lit well and with subtlety. They focus more on details. There is NEVER an HDR image to be found, at least not an overdone one. They give you a good feel for the home and depict it in its best possible light by not attempting to capture entire, large spaces all in a single photograph. And they are staged with much more sophistication. Keep in mind, the people curating the photos for dwell and its photographers are the best in the business. They know how to make a house look appealing better than anyone. In fact, I would say a good way to describe their job is to make these houses look as delectable as possible to gain interest and readership. Yet, Agents are focused on one thing. "Big". That's it. That is the scope of their photographic sophistication. They don't put the time into pondering the fact that if you show a space with an ultra wide angle lens to increase its apparent size, the image is going to be 35 percent ceiling. Of course they don't, that's the photographer's job. But they should get In better habit of relinquishing control, and I think dwell imagery and mls imagery would start to become less disparate.

The exhibits could go on and on, but those are the first two that came to mind. In the end people will believe what they want of course. I just think to be of the opinion that agents are experts in a field of art and aesthetics is like thinking joe Biden would be a good candidate to run a fashion show.

My short reference to listening to clients was certainly not meant to mean a slavish obedience to every client's request. The photographer must certainly have the artistic vision and creative independence to produce good work. In most cases, the photographer is hired for their artistic as well as technical ability. Some clients are very sophisticated with regard to RE photography and others don't know much about photography but they are very intuitive about good images and selling houses. Such people are valuable resources.

Some of my clients have valuable insights into producing images that sell houses. I have learned from them. My statement was in the context of encouraging photo hobbyist not to argue with or dismiss such comments from clients.

Ultimately RE images, for as creative as they may be, are a product designed to sell another product - not a free-standing artistic endeavor.


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digirebelva
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Jan 10, 2016 12:45 |  #7642

David Arbogast wrote in post #17852497 (external link)
No we watched the same ones. My problem is I hadn't watched them in over a year and was going off memory. Grr. My bad! Sorry about that. :oops:

You almost had me going back tr re-look at them again..:lol:


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Jan 10, 2016 13:07 |  #7643

IMAGE: https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5506/11742954094_253774ac18_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/iTFH​8L  (external link) Lounge (external link) by Anthony Mair (external link), on Flickr

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Jan 10, 2016 16:27 |  #7644

DonJuanMair wrote in post #17852609 (external link)
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/iTFH​8L  (external link) Lounge (external link) by Anthony Mair (external link), on Flickr

I would very much like to sit in that room and sip some scotch (or at least I'm guessing that's what's lining the back wall?).


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digirebelva
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Jan 11, 2016 07:26 |  #7645

IMAGE: https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1604/24288707486_b9e9734068_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/D1iY​wJ  (external link) Dining Area (external link) by Tim Wilson (external link), on Flickr

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Jan 11, 2016 13:37 |  #7646

jnecr wrote in post #17852899 (external link)
I would very much like to sit in that room and sip some scotch (or at least I'm guessing that's what's lining the back wall?).

yes sir!


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Scott ­ Spellman
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Jan 11, 2016 17:55 |  #7647

digirebelva wrote in post #17853568 (external link)
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/D1iY​wJ  (external link) Dining Area (external link) by Tim Wilson (external link), on Flickr

This is solid but really busy. At the very least I would remove the plant from the center of the table and roll up the blinds to make the area seem bigger.




  
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digirebelva
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Jan 11, 2016 20:16 as a reply to  @ Scott Spellman's post |  #7648

The blinds would work if there was something to view besides the back of other houses..


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Jan 11, 2016 23:38 as a reply to  @ digirebelva's post |  #7649

I've never done it because I've never been in the situation, but how would this look with the blinds closed? Anybody ever shoot a room with the blinds closed?


-John

  
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Jan 12, 2016 01:17 as a reply to  @ jnecr's post |  #7650

You lose all the ambient window light, it turns into a lifeless cave with the blinds closed.




  
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