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Shoot From An Angle That Shows Essential Features of a Room

Published: 06/07/2007
By: larry

The following two photos by William C Hutton, Jr are posted in the flickr photogroup and are of the same bedroom.

I was leaving a comment for William on the shot below that I thought a shot that showed the head-board end of the bed when I noticed that he already had such a shot from the other direction above. I think the difference is striking and thought this is a wonderful example of how much difference a change in angle can make.

In the lower photo you can't even be sure that this is a master bedroom. Whereas the upper photo clearly indicates that this is a master bedroom and shows off the windows and hardwood floors. I think the top photo (the one with the windows) is quite an effective master bedroom photo. Some would object to the bright windows but in this case, I find the bright windows not all that objectionable.

The point I like to emphasize is that it always helps to ask yourself : "what are the most important features that buyers would be interested in?" In this case, the windows, hardwood floors, bathroom and strong message that this is a master bedroom are essential. This is the essence of Essential #1 in my "10 Essentials of Real Estate Photography".

By the way, hardwood floors are a huge positive selling feature these days, the more you can show them off the better. I make it a point to talk to all our buyers about what they liked or didn't like about the photos and I've been amazed a the number that mentioned hardwood floors.

Thanks William for the example.

13 comments on “Shoot From An Angle That Shows Essential Features of a Room”

  1. Great Topic Larry:

    Perspective and composition are probably as important or possibly more important as lighting... After all it's one of the components to text book critique. (Technique, composition, concept) In general I try to shoot a room as if I was a customer looking at it. So an odd angle is generally out. One of the few times this may not be the norm is when I climb into the tub or shower to get a secondary shot of the bathroom. Note: Thats secondary not primary view. This allows a more natural view of a room to a potential buyer and there by please my boss, the Realtor.

    Anyway, I'm sure like everything else on here there will be a thousand different views on this but that's why I love this place.

  2. Some would object to the bright windows but in this case, I find the bright windows not all that objectionable.

    Well i am.....I just don't like blown out windows it is not natural after all we (real estate photographers) work for the "Potential Buyer"and buyers want to see some kind of background behind
    the window.There's always an exception to the rule like a wall or a big building that you don't really care to show,we must remember we are not in an Art Gallery competition and we have to show
    "potential buyers" what it is and I thing that a blown out window is not "What it is"
    Best Regards

  3. Actually, Mr Robert, there is a better (in my opinion) example of the top image in the flickr stream. The windows are more in line...

  4. Gary,
    Yes, I saw the version that William worked on the windows but I find the rest of that image too dark.

    MrRobert: Sure this is not a perfect image but I was making a point about composition rather than lighting.

  5. I don't work for potential buyers. I work for listing agents.

    I also like this image better than the other example where flash was used.

  6. I like the first image and have no problem with the blown out windows. The accurate exposure of the bedside lamps is sufficient and the accurate representation of the ambient light defines the room in a more appealing way. I think that recognizing when to retain some window detail, full window exposure or blown completley as well as being able to acheive those results in any given situation is what makes for strong photographers and ultimately better images. Real Estate Photography and it's encumberances denies the full abiltity to illustrate perfect results in many instances and so there is photographic compromise in many cases. The ability to make the best of all of those variables at any given point is what real estate photography is about.

    Almost everyone in this business works on other peoples shedules, not top dollar, quick yet strong results, weather influenced, home owner thought you would pick up afer the kids, can I have a copy of the pictures when your done, we are re-doing the garden in a week can you come back again, hurricane shutters on two days early, half eaten breakfast on the counter two hours later. Last but not least my absolute favorite ...... lifelike sex doll feet sticking out from under the bed, amongst other visible clutter.

  7. That's interesting, I find the over exposed windows distracting but I guess that's all a matter of taste. Seems like I'm in the minority this time. oh well, to each their own, right?

    Too true, more than once I've been told by the resident that they aren't ready after the client told me to go ahead a go at x time.

  8. In past years Real Estate Photography has been about the agent doing it as a supplement to the listing and it meant very little. These days and the future shows that the Internet will represent a strong percentage of new home lookers. Because the www, is visually based - stronger photographs will be the standard in not too long. Even the realtors that I have tight realtionships with there are younger agents already recognizing the visual impact of the web ----> Getting their business now is the way to go.

    Showing them that the images that they have over other agents are so much better and will work as tool for getting mor listings. I try to get in tight right from day one..... I want the agent to feel that I am extension of him/her working toward several common goals..... a reputation for comprhensive and skilled photography and the ability to produce marketing materials that will compliment and enhance there existing materials.

    Tough - for on person

  9. amen James, on post #6. that's our real life. we don't often have the luxury of choosing the perfect time of day, optimum conditions, etc. and we have to be able to work with what we have. What I am most proud of is being able to make something out of anything. The blown out windows don't bother me at all. I think it's a nice, appealing shot of the room and unless there is a spectacular view behind those curtains, it's not a problem. The room looks warm and cozy and it's great that we can see the en-suite bath...

  10. That is exactly what I meant Gary # 3,the one in Flickr feels more like a home more natural,about
    composition and perspective I thing it was very well done

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