Extend Your Real Estate Photography Business With Similar Types Of Photography

August 11th, 2013

CockpitThere are several types of photography that are very similar to real estate photography and depending on your geographic location can do one of these types of photography as an extension to a real estate photography business:

  1. Yacht’sSee this post. Many PFRE reader do Yacht photography.
  2. Luxury Motor Coaches – If you are near a motor home manufacturing company check this out.
  3. Airplanes – This is a new discovery for me.

Lee Jinks in McAllen, TX who has an extensive background in aviation told me about his experiences breaking into corporate aircraft photography:

About two years ago my friend, a Lear pilot, asked if I would shoot a Cessna Citation that was in the same hangar as his plane. I looked at the job as an opportunity to try something new and experiment. It was fun, and I think I got some pretty nice photos. I hadn’t planned on charging him because it was more of a favor, but the pilot of the Citation gave me some cash for my efforts.

I then began to think that this would be something fun to do if I could get my foot in the door. Well, this weekend my friend had an aircraft broker call me to shoot his Lear. The broker was impressed with my photos and I think he plans to use me as his go to photographer for the southern United States.

What’s nice is that most of the techniques are quite similar to those I use for real estate. I found that there where two situations where I could not shoot level and this was hard to do after shooting real estate for so long. In order to get out of the photo from the mirror and capture the seat and sink of the bathroom, I had to shoot at a weird angle. Additionally, the cockpit and panel had to be shot at an extreme down angle. Now that I see the photo, it’s much like many panel shots I’ve seen. I can see some improvements I need to make, but this was my first real jet shoot and I am generally pleased with the photos.

The down side is that these corporate jets are quite small and once you get your tripod and lights set up, there isn’t much room to maneuver. Plus, they don’t cool down the aircraft, so the environment is like working in your attic during summer. It’s not for everyone, but for those who love aircraft and like traveling, it might be fun.

Here is more of Lee’s shoot:

Exterior

 

cabin

 

bath

 

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7 Responses to “Extend Your Real Estate Photography Business With Similar Types Of Photography”

  • I recently shot a class A motorhome at a very large RV lot and will present the photos to the managers/owners to see if I can expand my business. Their own photos were pretty bad. The salesman who let me shot the RV was very helpful and had no problem with me shooting it. It only took about 45 minutes to shoot it.

  • I’m very impressed by these photos and a little curious as to how you lit the interior shots. Well done.

  • I used to shoot Class A motor homes (such as Monaco) and also Airstream. (I was assistant/Jr Photog for the man who had the accounts). I must say that there are some large similarities between RE and RV photography. The lessons I learned there have really helped me understand interiors and flow, even if I’m not inside a tube anymore.

  • Cliff, with the cockpit, I held two flashes and bounced them off the ceiling.
    I held one flash in the bathroom and bounced it off the ceiling of the opposite side of the room.
    With the cabin I bounced two flashes off the right side so I could use the left side of that photo and combined it with one that used flash on the left side, one in the chair at the back and one on the shelf just in front of the chair shown. I might have used another flash pointed into the scene on the respective sides. There was one flash in the bathroom set to a lower power. I used the front facing photo, reversed, to place in the mirror.
    And before anyone asks, I walked around the exterior with a group of three flashes taking multiple shots and then layered them in Photoshop.
    Hey, are these secrets I’m supposed to reveal? This isn’t magic, right?

  • Another way to expand (albeit BORING) is to start shooting apartment complexes. It’s usually a model or two, maybe a pool, tennis courts and a clubhouse. Pretty quick and easy work, and most complexes are not independent so one job leads to another and another. There are complexes like these everywhere. Most are marketed poorly with bad photos and generally nothing in regards to video.

    The subject matter leaves much to be desired, but it’s pretty easy money. I’m in the process of doing 22 of them right now…..

  • Thanks, Lee, for the information. For me it’s like finding gold.

  • Not too different than Real Estate, I like to shoot old mansions, homes and churches. I seek out non-profits (e.g., historical associations) and do a photo shoot and VT at no cost. I find it rewarding and challenging, mostly because of the difficult interior lighting situations. I get lots of exposure because of the number of views. For example, my VT or the Meeker Mansion in Puyallup WA (www.meekermansion.org) has been viewed almost 20,000 times. Putting some photos on Flickr nicely tagged also helps because of Google exposure (e.g., http://flic.kr/s/aHsjGShT7g). Another example is the oldest church in Tacoma WA (www.oldstpeters.org).

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