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The money shot

With the growing popularity of listing properties online it has become vital that the photographs accompanying the listing helps to seal the deal. We give you ten top tips to make your photographs stand out.

1. Set the stage

The first thing you have to do is clean up and declutter the room. Doing simple things like putting away TV remotes or hiding cables will give the potential buyer a better idea of how the room looks because they aren’t drawn to everyday clutter scattered around the room.

2. Let the light in

The best time to take photographs is during the early morning or late afternoon, the sun is more softer and more even during these times. Open shades or curtains to let in the natural light, if you need more light you can switch on lamps or overhead lights but be attentive to the shadows these lights cause.

3. Try a tripod

If you use a tripod you can set the camera on a longer exposure shot, thus reducing the need for a flash or switching on extra lights. This will ensure that your photo is not over exposed and there will not be strange shadows in important places. Using the tripod will also create sharper images as there is no shaking caused by holding the camera.

4. Shoot from your knees

Getting down on your knees will mean that you will have a lower perspective. Shooting while standing up causes furniture legs to be cut out of the picture and also gives the ceiling a dominating role in the photo, making the room appear smaller than it really is.

5. Widen your angle

If you have to photograph a small space like a bathroom use a wide angle lense, your average zoom lense cuts out too much of the interior and once again makes the space look smaller than it really is. When using a wide angle lense keep your composition in mind and your end product will be worthy of a magazine spread.

6. Determine your point of view

Normally every room has a focal point, try to capture that while keeping in mind the direction of the prevalent light source. Avoid shooting directly into the light, rather shoot in the same direction for an illuminating effect.

7. Know Your Aperture

The larger the Aperture (lower the number, i.e. f2) the more light will enter into the image, but the shallower the depth of field will be. When photographing interiors it is best to use an aperture of 5.6 or higher so that the entire image (foreground, middleground, background) is in focus.

8. Know Your Shutter

The slower the shutter speed (ie 1/30 of a second), the slower the aperture opens and closes, meaning the more light gets into your image. Slower shutter speeds are fabulous for bringing out warm ambient light but require a tripod. When shooting with flash, always use a slow shutter speed so the flash does not overpower the shot and flatten your image.

9. Expose Correctly

Blown out (overexposed) whites in windows are mostly fine as long as you have the proper exposure on what you consider to be the main subject. ISO is also your friend and should be increased as needed. I always start at 200 and slowly increase, never going over 1000. Your ISO latitude will depend on your camera model. Higher end cameras are very forgiving; lower end, not so much.

10. Post Production

When shooting RAW you must take time to sharpen and add some black and contrast to your images. Color correction and composition can also be perfected at this step.



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