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The Highest Rated Wide-Angle Zoom – Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 GM

June 21st, 2018

I was watching Tony Northrup compare the Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 GM lens to the Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 and realized that the Nikon 14-24mm has been considered the highest quality wide-angle zoom for as long as I can remember.

But that has changed. DxOmark.com rates the Sony 16-35mm GM that was released about a year ago as the highest quality wide-angle zoom lens. It scores 42 overall with a sharpness of 34 when tested on a Sony A7RII. Its sharpness score is 10 points ahead of the nearest competitor which is the Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L III.

Lightroom Updates 6/19/2018 – What You Need to Know

June 20th, 2018

 Here is a summary of the updates in the Lightroom Classic 7.4 – June 2018 release:

  1. Color labels for folders
  2. Preset Manager: Hide preset groups
  3. Preset Preview Preference
  4. Profile Manager
  5. HEIC file support (Mac OS High Sierra only)
  6. Panorama and HDR merges: Auto stack
  7. Folder search performance improvements
  8. Auto stack by capture time update
  9. Preset and profile syncing with Lightroom CC
  10. New cameras
  11. New lens profiles
  12. Bugs fixed

As we have talked about before, don’t be in a rush to update your Lightroom. It’s best to do it on a backup machine rather than the machine you depend on daily.

How Will Zillow 360 3D Tours Change the Real Estate Photography Industry?

June 19th, 2018

Jason in Missouri asks:

In reference to Zillow 3D Tours which will allow a free walk-through tour taken on iPhone in 30 minutes and listings with these tours will get preferential treatment on Zillow listing sites. How do you think this technology from Zillow will change and disrupt the real estate photography industry?

In my opinion, the aspect of Zillow that is disruptive is that:

  1. Zillow has all the listings in the US.
  2. Any home buyer in the US is likely to use Zillow first because whichever neighborhood you are in, the Zillow SmartPhone app will quickly and easily give you great information about homes for sale.
  3. For me, the 360 3D feature is a yawner. I would never use it. Even the video walk-throughs are usually uninteresting. The important Zillow technology that is disruptive is that it is a massive public real estate database accessible instantly via your smartphone.

Many times when walking through our neighborhood, my wife says, “Oh what’s so and so selling their home for, or what did that property sell for?” I bring up the Zillow app and within a couple of seconds, see everything anyone ever wanted to know about the property next to you.

And because of this popularity, they are starting to control many of the marketing rules.

How Are You Pricing Real Estate Video?

June 18th, 2018

Denise  asked the following:

I would be interested to hear how other photographers price real estate photos when asked for an add-on video tour.  Even if you structure a tour using the same or similar images from the stills, there is obviously added work to put together the tour video. Realtors of course would like the video just thrown in or at minimal cost. I am starting out at the videos and would value advise to structure a fair fee where I’m not taken advantage of nor pricing my services out of the market. As I see it, producing the tour is nearly as time consuming as the rest of the editing and should be an added cost of nearly the same value as the shoot.

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How Do You Decide What to Charge a Designer or Architect for Portfolio Photos?

June 17th, 2018

Anton in Australia asked:

I have a question about pricing for you. I have all my prices set. However, I’m not sure what to charge a designer or an architect for the portfolio photos. Obviously, I cannot do a yearly license as they are going to use the photos on their portfolio for much longer. How does it normally work? Please advise.

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Michael and Nory’s Show Reel for Uneek Luxury Tours from 2013

June 15th, 2018

Entering Your URL When You Comment on PFRE

June 14th, 2018

I’ve recently gotten several questions and comments about the fact that to make a comment on PFRE, you have to enter your URL, and why should you have to enter the “http://” part?

So here are some points that explain why this can’t easily be automated: Continue Reading »

“Ask The Guys” Feature of the Shooting Spaces Podcast

June 14th, 2018

Rich and Brian want to highlight the Ask The Guys feature of their Shooting Spaces podcast.

Now that we are just over 4 months into the podcast, we are really making an effort to push our Ask The Guys feature. This feature was inspired by the Ask Drone U podcast that does something similar with their listeners.

When we started this podcast, we had a goal of spreading education, teaching as much as possible; getting the best guests we could secure, and propelling this to be one of the best resources in the industry. While we have been able to achieve most of these, we are still looking to spread the education as much as we can. The best way for us to do this is to answer specific listener questions. There are dozens of posts on different FaceBook groups daily, and we do realize that posting in these groups do offer a more immediate response. Asking your questions through the Ask The Guys platform allows for a more in-depth 30-45 minute answer to your question. And if we can’t answer it ourselves, we will do our best to bring someone on who can.

We are inviting everyone to submit your Ask The Guys question (or you can just leave us a message saying hello). Be sure to include the name and URL of your business so others can look at your work while listening. We promise we will get to as many questions as we can!

How High Should Your Camera Be When Shooting Real Estate Interiors?

June 13th, 2018

CameraHeightKen asked the following question:

What heights do you set your tripod/monopod at? Do you shoot kitchens and bath lower or higher? Do you shoot from an average height – 5′ or do you shoot higher? Do you change shooting heights throughout the property? What is a comfortable height for the viewer? Any advantages from shooting higher or lower?

Below are my camera height rules. I have to admit that I’ve learned most of these rules of thumb from Scott Hargis so more accurately, these are Scott’s rules of thumb: Continue Reading »

Larry Gray’s “What to Look for in Real Estate Photography” Brochure

June 12th, 2018

Last week, Larry Gray, a Realtor in Florida, sent me a copy of his marketing brochure (click the image on the right to download Larry’s brochure) that is a nice alternative to the real estate photography marketing brochures that I’ve been giving away for many years.

Also, Rick Burgett sent me a link to recent data by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) that are recent statistics on the benefits of using professional real estate photography. This is the most recent study I’ve seen on this subject. Apparently, this data is from a NAR 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. You have to pay the NAR $149 to get the actual data but the red link above gives a summary of the study.

Making a Building Construction Time-Lapse Video

June 11th, 2018

Larry in Virginia asks:

One of my commercial clients manages multi-unit apartment buildings all around the DC area. Recently, I was asked if I could do a 30 second time-lapse for their marketing of a new building. I think technically, I can do it, but I have no idea what to charge for this.

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Compositing: Is It the Future of Great Real Estate Photography?

June 10th, 2018

Ray in North Carolina says:

I recently viewed a YouTube video where the photographer stated unequivocally that compositing is the now and future for producing great RE photography. I am an avid off-camera lighting shooter and he is right that the process can be cumbersome; not always producing the best possible photo. What are your thoughts on the topic?

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Why Do We Sell Our E-books Only in PDF Format ?

June 8th, 2018

David in South Carolina recently asked:

Will you be converting the PDF books to digital (Kindle format) soon? Myself (and plenty others) would buy a lot more books on PFRE if they were in digital (Kindle) format like Nathan Cool’s book.

If you become an Amazon affiliate, you would get a percentage of each sale and another stream of income for the website. PDF books are old school and not the way people read nowadays.

With all the upcoming changes to PFRE, Kindle formats for the books would be great!

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Real Estate Photography Workshops in Germany by Oliver Zielinski

June 8th, 2018

Recently, I got an update from Oliver Zielinski in Berlin about his real estate photography workshops and coaching:

I am currently quite busy with my real estate photography workshops. I’ve extended the original Berlin workshop to the metropolitan areas of Munich and Cologne. Also for Hamburg and Stuttgart, I am currently looking for nice photogenic venues. What I love, are remodeled seminar spaces which were originally shops with a sales room on the street front and a former apartment for the shop owners in the back. Here we can do all the teaching and have enough space for practical photography with differently shaped rooms, kitchen, bathroom etc. This always works fine for my kind of workshop and gives it a more personal and authentic atmosphere than any hotel seminar room could do. Continue Reading »

Which Wacom Tablet Do You Use and Why?

June 7th, 2018

Pete in Seattle asked:

In an effort to increase workflow, I’ve been evaluating a Wacom Tablet for my real estate photography. I picked up a BT-W Intuos unit over the weekend. This is not the pro series but seems to have all that I wanted. I wanted to see which one most of the group uses and why.
One thing I’ve noticed so far is that I cannot seem to replicate the ability to zoom in and out where ever I leave my mouse cursor.

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