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Congratulations to Zoltan Present – 2018 PFRE Videographer of the Year

January 18th, 2019

Congratulations to Zoltan Present from LuxHunters Real Estate Video and Photography Services in Miami, Florida. Zoltan won the October Videographer of the Month contest with this great video and has now been named PFRE Videographer of the Year for 2018.

Here’s what Zoltan had to say about the win:

Wow! What a surprise! I am greatly honored! : )
Being recognized by PFRE for the hard work we do at Luxhunters is really wonderful.
It has been 3 years since I have started offering videography to our clients after being bullied into it by one of my dear customers. The first videos I did were drone videos with a slideshow of photos for the interiors. The second step was holding the drone in my hand and walking around the house for filming. It was an obvious choice as the drone had great stabilization and very decent dynamic range (Phantom 3Pro). Then came the A7S (used in PP modes which only gave me headaches for a year) with the CameTV Mini2 gimbal (not a good choice) for a while until we finally found a winning combination (on a recommendation of one PFRE member) of the Panasonic GH4 and Ronin-M combo. Six months later, we introduced a slider to our workflow and the videos started to look really good. These days we use the GH5, Ronin-S, and Edelkrone motorized slider combo for best results. The GH5 has great colors and decent dynamic range and at this point, the only camera that allows us to film in 4K at 60fps. I like the 60fps as it gives us the possibility to slow down the footage for better smoothness.

Videography has become a key part of real estate marketing and we have been working hard to stay ahead of the ever growing competition.  I know that a lot of photographers are still hesitant to make the jump to start offering videography to their clients but I must say… it is necessary in most cases. One of the benefits of offering video is that it is a format where you can actually put your logo at the end of the film which most MLSs do not allow on still photos. Most realtors don’t know where to find us when they look at our world class photos on the MLS or in the client’s mailers but they can easily look us up once they see our logo at the end of the film. This way, the realtors become our main sales agents; they are eagerly sending out our marketing materials (our most recent videos) to 10,000 realtors; and they even pay for the mailing! : )

I encourage everyone to start experimenting with this very rewarding segment; you will be grateful you did.

Have a wonderful and extremely successful 2019!!!


How Does the PFRE Coaching Program Work?

January 17th, 2019

Ray in North Carolina asks:

I am 5 years into the business but need coaching to help me get to the next level. I know there are lots of great coaches listed on the PFRE site and going thru the process of selecting one is a bit daunting. Has there been an article on PFRE outlining how a coaching program works? The concepts I’m interested in are: 1) How does the basic relationship work? 2) Are contracts usually signed? 3) What criteria should a prospective student consider when interviewing potential Coaches? 4) How are fees charged?

Here’s how PFRE Coaching works: Continue Reading »

Is the Use of Video in Real Estate Marketing Increasing?

January 16th, 2019

A reader asked an interesting question last week:

Has the use of video in real estate marketing increased over the past few (3) years? If so, why and how is it increasing?

My first reaction was, of course it’s increased! We see the use of video exploding everywhere! But then I realized even though there are many factors that suggest the use of video should be increasing: Continue Reading »

Getting Started Shooting Real Estate with a Sony A6xxx

January 15th, 2019

Karen in Sunriver, OR says:

I’m a licensed agent and general contractor in California; although I currently live in Sunriver, OR. Since the passing of my husband a few years ago, and needing to support myself, I am looking to switch gears. I’ve always had a good eye for design, have an appreciation for real estate, and think real estate photography may be a good option for me. Do you have any YouTube videos, etc. with “how-tos” for real estate photography? Specifically using the Sony A6000 since that is the kind of camera that I have.

Continue Reading »

Using HDR for Real Estate Photography–Good or Bad?

January 14th, 2019

Lynn asks:

I would like your opinion regarding the HDR photos for real estate–good or bad? I have never done HDR photos and don’t understand this type of presentation. The photos I have seen on the MLS look like pastel photos – they do not look real and certainly give a false impression of the property. What is your opinion?

Continue Reading »

Announcement – New PFRE Tutorial Series with Garey Gomez

January 13th, 2019

In an article I posted back on June 3, 2018, one of the initiatives I mentioned as a priority for PFRE moving forward was an effort to collaborate with the best and brightest minds in the industry to bring our community quality content and educational opportunities.

Fast forward seven months and I’m excited to announce our first major collaboration with Atlanta-based photographer, Garey Gomez. Garey is the definition of professional, and he has a body of work that any real estate/interiors photographer would be proud of. Garey was an obvious choice for us to team up with to bring you the Mastering Real Estate Photography tutorial series. Continue Reading »

Wayne Capili of Interface Visual Interview

January 11th, 2019

Outsourcers Who Use Capture One for Their Editing?

January 10th, 2019

Chris asks:

Does anyone know of any outsourcers who use Capture One for their editing? I have recently switched to using a Fujifilm X-T3 and have learned that Adobe processes the RAW files terribly and need to use Capture One instead.

Continue Reading »

More Data which Demonstrates that Professional Photography Is Essential

January 9th, 2019

Over the years, there have been some studies that have shown that when listing agents use professional photography to market their listings, the listings sell for more.

The classic study was the 2013 Redfin study that is documented in the infographic by the Wilmington, NC Realtor Robert Preville that we’ve been giving away for about 5 years.

Since the original Redfin study, there have been a number of other studies that promote the benefits of professional real estate photography: Continue Reading »

Soft Sell Approach to Marketing Your Photography

January 8th, 2019

Shane in Canada has some ideas she wanted to bring up and talk about. This is an approach to marketing we haven’t talked about in the past. I’ll just pass on Shane’s comments on this subject.

Shane says:

I was thinking that a post on both big and small personal projects would be a great idea. Unpaid shooting that inspires and motivates us on a creative level–with the marketing/social media benefits in developing your name and brand. I have a big personal project I’ve been percolating and procrastinating about for several years. I’ve taken one small step and am determined that 2019 will be the year I make progress. Most successful photographers like Mike Kelley know the personal and professional benefits. Mike’s aviation project helped him get known and his Icelandic architecture made his portfolio and website more interesting.

Continue Reading »

What Is the Best Way for Real Estate Photographers to Increase Income?

January 7th, 2019

Keri in Witchita says:

In my area, I have 2 companies charging $100-125 for 2500SF home photo shoots. They have up to 6 employees shooting for them and they appear to do good work but I cannot figure out how they can charge so little. I’m so booked most of the time I’d like to hire a 2nd shooter but I cannot justify the cost.

Continue Reading »

What Is a Good Camera Body for Getting Started in Real Estate Photography?

January 6th, 2019

canon11-18mmKevin in Arizona asks:

I’m just getting into real estate photography and love your website. I’m deciding on a low cost entry level camera. Canon has the SL2 refurb on sale for $400, which is the least expensive camera they have in stock that is sufficient and has good Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB) features. My main question; is it worth spending an extra $300 to get the T7i refurb that you list on your Cameras page as the most popular real estate photography camera?

Continue Reading »

How To Plan Your Best Year Ever — 5 Tips

January 4th, 2019

How to Mask Windows Using the Range Mask Tool in Lightroom CC

January 3rd, 2019

This is a guest post by John DiStefano of Bayville, NJ on masking windows in Lightroom CC. Click the GIF to the right to see John’s example images.

Recently, I was playing around with Lightroom CC and learned how to fine-tune a masked area and have greater control with the new Range Mask tool using both color and Luminance masks to help target areas within a mask to apply specific effects. I thought this might be a great way to do window pulls instead of going back and forth to PS, or dealing with flash. Here is a quick summary of what I found that yields pretty good, quick results that you don’t have to apply highlight correction to the entire room and avoids the dark areas around the window frame and mullions. Perhaps the readers can improve on the process. The example I used was a 3 shot bracket, 2 stops apart, that created an HDR merged image within Lightroom. These images start out looking very flat but have tons of room for adjustments. Continue Reading »

Architecture and Interiors Photography Class by Ethan Tweedie

January 2nd, 2019

This is a reminder that Ethan Tweedie will be teaching a 5-day class in architecture and interiors photography at the Texas School of Photography April 28 – May 3, 2019, in Dallas, Texas and the registration opens January 3rd at 11 pm, CST. We are reminding you because the class is expected to sell out tomorrow (1/3/2019).

Details below: Continue Reading »