RSS Feed Photography For Real Estate

There Are Some Issues When You Move to the New Full Frame Sony Mirrorless Bodies

April 25th, 2018

Larry in Virginia is looking for advice in moving from his Canon 5DMkIII to a Sony A7III. He says:

I’m a Canon 5DMkIII shooter considering the Sony A7III for my real estate work with an adapter and my Canon 17-40mm L to lighten the load a bit. My 17-40mm has been the workhorse for my work. I rented the Sony and discovered the image format is ARW. Lightroom Classic 7.2 does not recognize ARW files but 7.3 does. However, I’ve read about various bugs in 7.3 and I’m hesitant to upgrade yet. But the way I’ve found to use ARW files is to convert them to TIFF using Adobe DNG converter and that is a pain. Anyone have a workflow tip here they can share? If you’ve upgraded to 7.3, how’s it working for real estate?

There are two issues here. Lightroom Classic CC 7.3 and using Canon glass on Sony full frame bodies with adapters. Let’s address them one at a time.

Lightroom Classic CC 7.3 Problems
Yes, Lightroom Classic CC 7.3 initially had some problems. When I first got Larry’s question, Adobe had not released a fix for the problems but as I write this (4/24 morning) Adobe just released Lightroom Classic CC 7.3.1 which I’ve just installed on my backup machine. I recommend that everyone who depends on the operational reliability have a backup computer to verify the integrity of the software before you starting using it in your production workflow.

Canon Glass on Sony Full-Frame Bodies
I have plenty of Canon glass but I don’t have a Sony full-frame mirrorless body. The research I’ve done indicates there are some downsides to using adapters for Canon glass on Sony full-frame mirrorless bodies; particularly with wide-angle lenses like real estate photographers are likely to be using. This video by Tony Northrup is just one such example. My conclusion is that you get the best results by using Sony G Master lenses on Sony mirrorless bodies. Does anyone have direct results with this?

Advice on How to Get Started in the Real Estate Photography Business

April 24th, 2018

Darrin from the east Los Angeles area says:

As a new real estate photographer just starting my business, I’m still learning what real estate associations are, how the real estate industry works, etc. So I’m literally at step 1. I’m wondering what are the most effective ways of getting my first clients. Should I beat the pavement and visit RE offices and hand them my marketing material? Should I try to get presentation time at an office or association? Should I try Facebook or Google ads? I’m willing to grind; I just want to grind in the most productive places.

In general, face to face marketing is the strongest way to market Realtors because they are very people oriented. Going to real estate offices is one way. Give a presentation if you can but some areas are so real estate photography savvy, that it doesn’t work well anymore. Going to open houses is another way to meet face to face with listing agents.

Here are two past posts that go into detail about how to market listing agents:

  1. A summary of what readers have reported working
  2. A success story from a reader in the Seattle area

Also, here are some listing agent marketing materials that we’ve developed over the years. Probably the most useful is the condensed version (one double-sided page) and the jumbo postcard version.

Rich Baum Announces a Second Workshop in Dallas, TX

April 24th, 2018

The newly announced workshops are:

  • Dallas, TX – May 9-10

If you have watched Rich Baum’s YouTube videos, you can now spend two full days with Rich for a hands-on photography workshop learning all the techniques he teaches in his videos.

 Click here for more details and to signup Continue Reading »

Congratulations! – April 2018 PFRE Photographer of the Month

April 23rd, 2018

The April 2018 PFRE Photographer of the Month contest has come to and end. The theme this month was master bedroom and we had a total of 26 entries from 7 countries. Thank you to everyone who participated, and the jurors who took time out of their busy schedules to contribute their votes and thoughtful commentary.

Congratulations to Matt Rosendahl from Auburn, California, PFRE Photographer of the Month,  April 2018. This is the second POTM win for Matt. He has also won the October 2017 “elevated exterior” contest with this image. Continue Reading »

How to Help Ensure You Get Credit When Agents Use Your Photos in Large Publications

April 22nd, 2018

Cameron in Southern California said:

I just found out that ran a feature story on their website about a property I photographed. They credited themselves on all the images. The listing agent contacted me when he saw the article reproduced in its entirety on the website of the Seattle Post Intelligencer. A Google search shows the same article reproduced on the websites of the New Haven Register website and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Continue Reading »

Zhiyun Crane 2 for Real Estate Video – Grant Johnston

April 20th, 2018

What Do You Charge to Relicense Real Estate Photos to the Stager?

April 19th, 2018

Randy in Pennsylvania asks:

I photographed a home for a real estate agent that was professionally staged. The stager is interested in obtaining some of my photos. How much do I charge? Never done this before.

First of all, I would license the photos to the stager for a specific use and length of time and have the stager sign a license agreement.

Does the stager just want to use the photos on her website or does she want to use them in printed marketing materials? Charge more for printed use.

My guess is that if the stager just wants to use the photos on her website, you should charge at least as much as the agent; probably more because the stager will want to use them longer.

What do readers think?

How Can Real Estate Photographers Create Short Teaser Videos?

April 18th, 2018

Ashley in South Carolina asks:

I am looking for a new way to do what our Realtors call “teaser” videos. Very short, fast moving, less than 30-second videos to generate interest in a property. I would like a program that will generate different looking videos if possible.

I assume you are referring to short videos like this. Although you say you are looking for software to do it, it sounds like you are wanting to do it from a series of stills. While there is software like Animoto, Magisto, Smilebox, and many others that do this, I think it would be much more effective to just create your own with a series of video clips from the shoot. To me, these days, shooting and editing video is so quick easy, it’s always a big turnoff when I see video constructed from a series of stills.

What Are the Requirements to Shoot Drone Video for Real Estate in the US?

April 17th, 2018

Don in Florida asks:

I’ve recently bought a DJI Spark Drone and need to make it as legit as possible to add to my commercial real estate services. I’ve read that I need FAA registration but others have said I need a pilot’s license? This is kind of confusing for me. I live in Florida and want to make sure I am operating without any legal anxieties. I’d love to know everything we are required to do in order to be legit, if you would be so kind.

Continue Reading »

High Volume Real Estate Photographers Should Consider Outsourcing Their Post-Processing

April 16th, 2018

Marlize in Perth, Western Australia says:

I am a real estate photographer in Perth, Western Australia.
I have been using Cross Digital for quite some time now for all of my shoots. They do my processing as well as my virtual staging. Their turn-around time is well within the 24-hour time-frame (more like 12 hours in most cases) and their virtual staging is usually ready within 24 hours; though they have a time limit of 48 hours. They are always happy to make amendments that I request.

Continue Reading »

Example of the Pixel Shift Algorithm on the New Sony A7RIII

April 15th, 2018

Candace in the Chicago area says:

Just thought you might be interested in seeing the result of using the new Sony A7R III with Sony’s proprietary Pixel Shift algorithm. Here is a comparison I did between shooting with and without Pixel Shift.

When you “pixel peep” the originals, there is a huge difference!

There are more details in this article.

Using the Auto Settings in Lightroom Classic CC

April 13th, 2018

Example of Interior Video that Can Be Shot with a DJI OSMO

April 12th, 2018

Alan in NZ says:

I’m looking at buying some LED lights to help with real estate interior video while using an X5 and DJI Osmo. All suggestions welcome. How many do I need to illuminate an average room?

I would encourage you to hold off on buying LED lights for shooting interior video because the top interior videographers do not use LED lights to shoot interiors.

As an example, this is an interior video done by Zoltan Prepszent with a DJI OSMO. Here is a post I did on the PFRE blog a couple of years ago where Zoltan explains why he was forced to shoot with the DJI OSMO. This is one of my all-time favorite property videos!

Also, I recommend Grant Johnston’s video series on “Using the DJI Osmo to Shoot Professional Real Estate Video”.

When Does the Quality of a Wide Angle Lens Become Overkill?

April 11th, 2018

Peter in Alberta asked:

Is anyone shooting with the Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art Lens?

I may have overreacted when I told Peter that I thought that the Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art Lens is overkill for shooting real estate.

Here’s why I think the Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art Lens may be overkill for real estate:

  1. I’ve been “balled out” many times for racking wideout to 16mm (on my full frame Canon DSLR) when shooting my wife’s listings. I can only imagine how she would react to shots done at 12mm! It wouldn’t be pretty!
  2. Even though back in 2003 when I purchased my full frame Canon DSLR, I bought a Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 lens to go with it for real estate work. I know now that a lens for half the price would have been more than adequate for real estate.

Don’t get me wrong, I really appreciate high-quality gear. I love geeking out and getting the best quality available but it frequently doesn’t make good sense. The fact is, when you pay twice as much to get a little bit better quality, your clients usually can’t tell the difference!

What Is the Most Efficient Way to Do an Intensive Amount of Photoshop Work?

April 10th, 2018

Mike in Florida says:

My question concerns post-processing automation. The process I use is flash plus ambient based, and the results are very good. As I have refined my process, I have done quite a bit of automation within Photoshop. But there are repetitive actions that I do for every job that I would really like to automate but have been unable to. I wind up stacking photos either in Lightroom or Bridge and then sending to Photoshop to blend layers, color correct, etc.

Continue Reading »