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  • Writer's pictureNala W.

A Guide On How To Take Excellent Real Estate Photos -- The Best Tips!

Taking professional HDR real estate photos in Minnesota requires careful planning, the right equipment, and attention to detail. To start, gather your equipment, including a high-quality DSLR or mirrorless camera with manual settings, a sturdy tripod for stability, and a wide-angle lens (around 10-24mm) to capture expansive interiors. Don't forget to pack extra batteries and memory cards to avoid any interruptions during the shoot. Before you begin, ensure the property is clean and clutter-free to present it in the best possible light.


Here is a list of great equipment that I use!

Cameras:


Lenses:


Tripods:


Here are some tips!


Next, plan the shoot timing according to natural light conditions. The golden hours of early morning and late afternoon are ideal for capturing warm, soft lighting that enhances the property's appeal. Keep an eye on the weather forecast to ensure clear skies and optimal lighting conditions during your shoot days.


A great app that I use frequently to find out when golden hour is, is called Lumy. Lets me know everything from when golden hour starts and when sunset is. Definitely helps with getting the perfect twilight shot!


The HDR (High Dynamic Range) technique is crucial for real estate photography as it helps balance the exposure in scenes with a wide range of light intensities. To achieve this, set your camera to bracketing mode, which will capture a series of shots with varying exposures. For a balanced HDR image, typically take 3 to 5 shots: one underexposed, one correctly exposed, and one overexposed. You can capture more shots if necessary, especially for challenging lighting situations.


If you are still having trouble understanding this concept, id advise checking out this video!


Configure your camera settings manually to have full control over the exposure. Opt for a smaller aperture (between f/8 to f/11) to ensure maximum depth of field, which is essential for capturing sharp details throughout the scene. Use a low ISO setting (around 100-200) to minimize noise in the images. It's also recommended to use a remote shutter release or your camera's timer to prevent camera shake and ensure sharpness in your shots.


When composing your shots, aim to capture the entire room while highlighting its key features. Utilize leading lines and angles to guide the viewer's eye through the photograph. It's important to keep your camera level to avoid distortion or skewed lines, especially when capturing architectural elements. Pay attention to the balance of the composition and the placement of furniture and decor items.


Here a great example photo that I took:


For exterior shots, aim to capture the property during the golden hour to showcase it in the best light. Avoid shooting directly under harsh sunlight, which can create strong shadows and washed-out highlights. Incorporate the surrounding landscaping, gardens, and outdoor spaces to provide a comprehensive view of the property.


Example:



Once you've completed the photoshoot, transfer the images to your computer for post-processing. Utilize HDR software such as Adobe Lightroom or Photomatix to merge the bracketed shots and create a single HDR image. Adjust settings such as exposure, contrast, and color balance to achieve a natural-looking result. Be cautious not to over-process the images, as overly manipulated photos can deter potential buyers seeking a realistic representation of the property.


Following HDR processing, use photo editing software to fine-tune the final images. Adjust color balance, sharpness, and contrast as needed, while also correcting any lens distortion if applicable. Consider cropping and straightening images to enhance their composition and remove any distractions or blemishes.


In the final stages, ensure that the images accurately represent the property's appearance and features. Save the images in a format suitable for both print and online use, and provide high-resolution files to clients. Organize the images logically for easy viewing, showcasing the property's interior, exterior, and key selling points.


The platform that I reccomend is called Aryeo. They are one of the best companies out there that provide excellent support for displaying and downloading the photos, upon many other things such as making them MLS ready.


As you gain experience, you'll refine your techniques and learn to adapt them to different lighting conditions and property types. With dedication and practice, you'll be able to consistently produce professional HDR real estate photos that effectively showcase properties in Minnesota's competitive market.


Let me know if you have any questions! I would be happy to help anyone looking to become a real estate photographer! :)

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