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How to Shoot Real Estate Video

August 7th, 2017

I recently ran across this 20-minute tutorial by Parker Walbeck.

I think it contains a lot of good information so I thought I’d pass it along. Parker shoots many other types of video in addition to real estate video.

I like Parker’s style except for the fact that he doesn’t pay much attention to keeping walls straight up and down. I guess the vertical wall thing is just a still photographers obsession. Videographers that don’t shoot stills aren’t bothered by walls that aren’t vertical. We’ve talked about this issue recently. There are a variety of opinions on this.

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8 Responses to “How to Shoot Real Estate Video”

  • An excellent tutorial indeed Larry. He really nails that freeflowing POV style. Also some great tips on gear. I like the look of that Laowa 12mm ‘no distortion’ lens.

  • Looking further into the comments on the YouTube link, he does in fact discuss the verticals question. I guess it’s OK to cut and paste…

    ‘Problem with rules is you usually have to break one to comply with another. It’s also a “rule” (rule of thirds) at times not to have your horizon dead middle of your frame (which is what needs to occur to “keeping the verticals”). At times I think it’s poor framing to have an empty ceiling taking up half your frame while cutting the furniture out of the bottom half of your frame. If you watch the final 90 second video, there’s probably only 15-20 seconds of footage that doesn’t follow the vertical rule, so for the most part, verticals are vertical. There are rooms occasions that I like tilting the camera to cover certain aspects of the house that aren’t covered as well if I keep my horizon in the middle. Also I like adding tilt downs and tilt ups occasionally. As SOME point, the verticals will be vertical, but at other points in the shot, they won’t be. At times I choose a unique movement over this “rule”. I also don’t follow the 180 degree rule at times, or the shutter speed rule… some have even told me that it’s a rule to keep my shots static??? Understand the rules, but don’t let them override your creative abilities. There’s a reason why I get hired over others who follow all the film rules exactly, because my work stands out, is unique, and usually more creative. I know too many “creatives” that won’t budge outside of what they were taught in film school and sadly I’ve found that those who follow the rules the best, usually have the least creative work.?’

    Talented film maker I reckon. I shall be looking more into his video tutorials.

  • @Hamish – Thanks for pointing out Parker’s comments on verticals. I have to say I do like his style! Makes sense that you have to give up the vertical issue for that free flowing style.

  • Honestly, in the case of video, not having perfect verticals doesn’t bother me one bit. Even on shows like Fixer Upper, they don’t always have straight verticals.

  • I have to admit the verticals are driving me crazy… And you don’t have to give up or sacrifice verticals just because you want free flow. The Zhiyun Crane allows you to have both, even those what I really wish is that Glidecam and Zhiyun would combine their stabilizers so you’d have double gimbal smoothness with Glidecams rotation.

    I use a Glidecam and Typhoon handheld as a combo and the double gimbal is awesome. I just Velcro the Typhoon base to the Glidecam platform. It’s great for properties with too many trees for a drone.

  • From Hamish’s quote of Walbeck:
    “… It’s also a “rule” (rule of thirds) at times not to have your horizon dead middle of your frame (which is what needs to occur to “keeping the verticals”)….”

    Right there he loses all credibility. There is absolutely no reason why the horizon has to be across the middle of your frame in order to keep your verticals vertical. The only factor, the ONLY ONE, is: level the camera.

  • Fair point Scott but I would not let that distract from checking out the guy’s wider work and video tutorials. His YouTube channel is packed with really useful tips and it’s free. Sounds like I’m sponsored by him I know! But there’s so much rubbish online that when you find a good resource, I’m keen to learn all I can. And yes, thanks for your courses on Lynda.com too, Scott, that I enjoyed a while back ;).

  • All great points. However, selling real estate is about engaging the buyers. Entertaining the buyers. Getting a buyer emotionally involved with the property. And that’s done with great footage, enticing edits, and telling a good story. Most people don’t care about verticals because the image is moving. At least to a point. Yes, framing and verticals is something we all should be aware of but it’s not a golden rule. I feel proper colors and white balance is just as important which is why I really liked to see him emphasize changing those setting for each shot. Every room has different light and colors so making them correct if key for representing the property.

    I feel this is great tutorial and touches some aspects that are often overlooked. Thanks Larry for posting this one.

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