A Tutorial on the Window Masking Editing Technique

Selling property relies on packaging the entire home in a way that is enticing to the viewer. It must showcase the exterior and how it complements the interior, and vice versa. This mutual relationship creates a holistic view of the home, helping the buyer make a decision. One of the things that this relationship relies on is how interiors bring in a view from the outside. In real estate photo editing, there is more than one way to do this. There is the Window Pull Technique and there is the Real estate Window Masking editing technique. Both of which intend to show the view from the outside so that people can take a gander at what they can expect when they buy the property.

This real estate photo editing technique came out as a result of the inability of cameras to perfectly capture both insides and outsides from the vantage point of the interior. Windows produce a glare that cameras cannot process, even though they are built with the most advanced features. The aperture and length of exposure can help focus on different areas to help them brightly expose the interior or exterior, but always seldom or never both at the same time. Hence, the real estate window masking editing technique will help reconcile this flaw and allow the picture to be worthy of being seen by the public eye.

What is Window Masking?

The real estate window masking editing technique is simply the way to mask the overly exposed windows and show the view from the window from the perspective of being inside the home. This is normally done when the view is breath-taking, and they can be the number one selling point of the property. Well, even if it is not, real estate photo editing endeavors to re-create the image as if the buyer would be inside the room instead of dealing with the shortcomings of a raw image captured by the camera.

Your Guide to Window Masking

  1. Declutter the area around the window prior to the shoot.

Windows should be free of clutter around the windowpane. This is an important item that would later set-up easier post-processing steps because it will get rid of any irregular shapes and objects that could potentially obstruct the view from the window.

  1. Shoot bracketed images for those 2 photos with different exposures.

Bracketed images should be able to give you 2 things. One is a well-lit interior and, on another photo, a highly visible view from the window. In either photo, there might not be a middle ground that both interiors and views will be visible to bracketed photos is a must. Using the automatic mode of the camera, changing exposure compensation will do the trick while for those who live for manual adjustments, changing the aperture and shutter speed will help achieve the different exposures.

  1. Create a layer by dragging the image to the layers panel, making sure that the visible room is the one on top.

Now that you have both images, proceed with this real estate photo editing technique by opening both photos, dragging them both into the layers panel so you can edit with them on the same working file. The image with the visible room and glared windows must always be on top so that the window masking technique can make it easier to edit the photo.

  1. Use the Polygonal Lasso tool to select the windowpanes perfectly by anchoring at each corner to form the polygon and closing it by returning to the point of origin.

This real estate photo editing tool will allow you to precisely mark the windowpane that will be removed. The beauty about this variation of the lasso tool is that it allows you to follow any angled or irregular skewing of the window as everything might not be in an equal measurement and perspective.

  1. To add to the current area enclosed by the polygonal lasso too, hold the shift key and repeat step 5 and 6 on another windowpane. Repeat, as necessary.

In most cases, there will be more than one windowpane. If you do not follow this step, you are bound to lose the current selected windowpane as you move to the next one. Therefore, it is crucial to achieve this step with efficiency to save time.

  1. Invert the selection by looking for the option under Select >> Inverse.

Inverting the selection means you are shifting the attention to the selected space, which are the windowpanes. This real estate editing technique can be tricky if you do not do this, as it will retain the windowpanes and remove the entire room if not done.

  1. Select the Add Layer Mask button found on the Layer Panel (Square icon with a circle at the center).

The add layer mask will be the final step for the real estate window masking editing technique. By clicking this button, the glared windows will disappear and simultaneously surfacing the view from the image underneath this layer, thereby exposing the beautiful sights from the windows.

  1. For any edges that are jagged or unsightly, paint it with the color black for the layer to determine it will be masked as well.

Zoom in to get a closer look at the edges of the windows. Perform retouching as needed and use the color black with a brush to denote that you are including these areas in the layer mask.


Without a doubt, the real estate window masking editing technique brings life into interior spaces of a property. It brings together the best of both worlds and allows the people at home to see how it truly looks from the inside at the comfort of their mobile devices. The steps it takes to execute this technique is very simple and requires only a few steps that are indeed apt for the intent, keeping in mind that cameras cannot fight through the glare and show the room at the same time. The beauty about doing this is allowing the property to shine and standout by showing its true offerings. Hence, doing this real estate photo editing technique will surely bring in a lot of good attention and help it sell a whole lot faster.