9 Interior Real Estate Photography Tips
There's something genuinely magical about beautiful interior images.
They can help showcase an architect’s innovative building design, promote an interior designer’s creative skill, and they can help a real estate agent sell properties faster.
One of the most rewarding yet challenging aspects of real estate photography is the ability to take great photos of commercial and residential interiors. To achieve a great shot, you have to consider many factors. These tips will help you take exceptional interior images:
Use light creatively
There is nothing as important as light when it comes to photography. Try to determine what kind of light you have to work with and how best to use that light. You may decide to use the natural light from the windows or doors, or you can supplement that with artificial lighting from lamps or the flash. You may also want to shoot in a bracket. That means taking several exposures using several sources of light which can then be digitally blended later on.
Try to understand how the intensity, clarity, and color of light varies between various light sources throughout the day. Once you understand how you want to interplay light and shadow, you'll be more adept at producing more creative and stunning interior photography.
Take some time to organize and rearrange
Create a checklist of things to do before the shoot. Send this list to the realtor or homeowner before you arrive. When you arrive, check that everything looks good. If necessary, remove little imperfections and flaws that can become noticeable such as cars parked in driveways, magnets on the fridge, and clutter on countertops. You may need to ask your client's permission first.
To capture the whole room, use a wide-angle lens
This is one of the differences between a professional real estate photo and an average-looking one. Use a 16-24mm lens to capture more of the room. When you are in a tight space, it will make any room look much bigger.
Ensure that everything is perfectly aligned
Use the grid in your camera to align the room's vertical and horizontal architectural elements. If there's no grid, align the room against the vertical and horizontal lines of the viewfinder. Even the slightest tilt will make it appear that the room is either tipping away from the viewfinder or falling. Thankfully, slightly tilted shots can be corrected using real estate photography editing techniques and tools. There are also third-party photo editing companies that specialize in high-quality image retouching.
Know the exposure triangle
The first step to having great interior photos is to to get a well-balanced exposure. The camera's exposure-related settings are aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. Learn how to use them in conjunction with each other so you can get the perfect image every single time.
You will want to use a large enough aperture for full-room shots so that most of the room is in focus (like f/8 to f/16). You also want it small enough so that you can keep your ISO low enough to prevent noise. It would be ideal to use a tripod so that you can avoid camera shake at low shutter speeds (Step 7 below).
Try to look for the perfect angle
Try to walk around the outside of the room, while looking at it from all kinds of angles. Try to determine which angle shows the room in its most attractive light. Then set up your shot. If necessary, stand in a corner to get the widest possible perspective or shoot through an open door. You can also do an overhead shot by positioning yourself in the counter, table, or stairs.
Use a tripod and the camera timer
To get the clearest, sharpest shots, mount your camera on a tripod and set the camera's built-in timer. If you don't do this, even the slightest movements can make your shots blurry, especially when shooting in low-light or when taking a very long exposure.
Learn how to process your images
It's rare to take the perfect shot every single time. Sometimes, there will be a need to do some retouching or editing. Post-processing can improve your photographs by increasing contrast, brightening colors, cropping unwanted sections, and more.
Keep on practicing
There's no shortcut to getting better at anything. If you have a camera, you can always practice taking shots around your own home. When you're tired of your own place, you can take a few photos on others' homes, provided you don't share the images.
However, you should not practice on a paid shoot unless you've already finished your paid work and have a little time to experiment a little. Remember, there are no shortcuts in life, including photography. If you want to get good, you must put in the hard work.
The Bottom Line
There are many other techniques to help you get the perfect shot, but these nine are sufficient for now. All the best on your journey toward being a professional real estate photographer!