Real Estate Photography

Real estate photography done for property brochures and catalog has a commercial value. It is for promotion and sale of real estates - that is buildings, properties, bungalows and structures. Real estate photography can be considered as a type of architectural photography, however, there is a difference in application and approach.


Architectural photography is mainly done for record. It may be of historical places and monuments with heritage value. In most of cases, we shoot a picture of a building, which is constructed for its beauty. These buildings or structures are not for commercial use and picture we shoot is either for our own collection and memory, or it may be used on posters, books or calendars.

In case of real estate photography, it is done for promotion. In this case, we may have to shoot a structure, which has no pictorial appeal, and we have to present the subject in most beautiful way.

We have some liberty in real estate photography. We can ask the owner to paint or repair a part, which is looking old or damaged. This is never possible, when we take a picture of Taj Mahal or Eiffel Tower.

Real estate photography of buildings are done from outside, as well as from inside. As our main purpose is to enhance the appeal, we should plan our shoot for props, lighting and other details.

We can use a normal lens for exterior shots of a building, but be sure for vertical lines. A perspective control lens is more suitable for real estate photography. Otherwise, select a camera position, which is higher form ground level. Now keep the camera as leveled as possible and correct vertical lines for plumb position.

Real estate photography can be done in day light, but we should also shoot some pictures at dawn (or dusk). If it is a factory building, which has lights on outside, then we must capture this beauty at night. We can also use "painting with light" technique to open up some dark area.

For this, fix the camera on a sturdy tripod and compose the frame. Use manual mode so that shutter speed and aperture settings can be manually set. Set the lowest ISO rating. Set the smallest aperture like f 22 or f 32. Now take readings for shutter speed. Say for example, it is thirty seconds.

Now take a compact camera flash light (which has 110 guide number) and fire it in the dark part of the building from twenty feet. In order to get correct exposure, we need f 5.6 for this distance. But as we are shooting at say f 22, we will not be able to expose the darker side.

Here we have two options. We can use more than one flash light, or secondly, we can fire multiple flash. (or we can combine both options). We need to fire the flash for at least eight times. This is possible, as the camera shutter will be open for thirty seconds. Only consideration is flash power recycle time, which has to be fast enough within three seconds.

Color rendering may defer because of different color temperature of available lights and flash light. We may use a color correction filter on flash light.

Taking pictures inside a room of a flat or bungalow is similar to that of shooting a room set. However, when we use a wide angle lens, the room looks much bigger because of optical limitation. This result fools a prospective buyer.

Real estate photography may not be as fascinating subject as other genre of photography, but it has its own importance.

<I>Real estate photography</I>




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