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11-13-2013, 11:00 PM   #1
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Real Estate (LIGHTING)
Lens: 14/2.8 Camera: k5 Photo Location: Idaho 

Hey guys, Just curious how you guys light real estate photography. Specifically bathrooms and bathroom showers. Where do you put a flash so that the ceiling doesn't show a highlight line. Just for example, nothing I would give to a customer, In the bathroom shot attached, you can see how the toilet area is dark but then at one point the flash highlight shows up on the wall. What could get me a less noticeable contrast in shadow and light?

Also, I'd like a critique on the kitchen shot more than anything. Photoshopped and fully edited. How's the contrast, sharpness, colors, composition... etc.

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11-17-2013, 02:13 AM   #2
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Nothing to do with lighting but I think 2 things that are important with real esate interior stuff is using a wide angle lens with it as far back into one of the corners of the room as possible in order to make the room look as big as possible and removing as much clutter from the room as possible which will also make the room look bigger.
11-17-2013, 03:19 AM   #3
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Again nothing to do with lighting, which looks pretty good btw.

The big but is that for real estate photography, both verticals and horizontals must be vertical and horizontal. Both of your images show tilting of both due to camera leaning.

The easy fix is a wide angle lens set farther back and squarely on a tripod at the time of taking or alternately it can be done in PP, but this will often result in some unwanted cropping.

See my quick edits, as you can see it's quite subtle, but I hope you will agree worthwhile.
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11-17-2013, 01:50 PM   #4
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It's tough to get good shots in a confined space like a bathroom. First I'd recommend a tripod so you can frame it as well as possible. If a tripod isn't practical in the space perhaps a heavy duty gorillapod like a slrzoom might work or a mini tripod. As for lighting with a single flash it can be hard to get light to hit the way you'd like it. Getting the flash off the camera would give more options. A diffuser like a Gary Fong lightshpere to bounce it around or a DIY model. A second flash might be a thought or even better for small areas like these a LED panel that has adjustable brightness and adjustable color temperature. The adjustable color is important because of the color mismatches that will happen because of flash, warm light bulbs, cool outside light etc. It will help reduce the differences. As mentioned getting the verticals and horizontals right is a must and minimizing any lens distortion also. Another option would be to take a couple of different exposures and blend them together depending on how important the result is. Just a few things you might consider.
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Greg

11-17-2013, 09:29 PM   #5
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I like the first one a lot with three fairly minor notes:

1- it looks uneven (though I admit I didn't get my bubble level out.) The horizontals seem to be slanting which could be either from the camera off-level or from the sensor not being parallel to the counter fronts.
2- I'd like about 15% more on each size so that, at minimum, the sides of each cabinet aren't cut off.
3- If you're selling homes in Portland, get the Chicago Cubs mug out of the picture. It would be worth having a home photo kit you carry with you that has a mug from the local college, some old B&W photos in frames that you could put on shelves or counters, a plastic vase with some plastic flowers (so the vase doesn't break) and so forth. Those kinds of things would allow you to control your settings a bit more and make sure that all your photos have a local feel.

For the second, that's not working well for me. The image needs to be wider and backed out further. Losing the mirror's upper corner and the window valence are problematic for me. Also, the light fixture is cut off and the bottom of the counter. I think that your camera is basically at the correct height. I'd have dropped it two inches to cut out the top of the toilet in the mirror. Also, I would group the three objects on the counter together. That would give the counter a central focus and draw the viewers' attention to the double sinks.

In terms of lighting, instinct, etc., the images are really solid and I think they're in the 99th percentile of real estate photos that I've seen.
11-18-2013, 07:00 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
Again nothing to do with lighting, which looks pretty good btw.

The big but is that for real estate photography, both verticals and horizontals must be vertical and horizontal. Both of your images show tilting of both due to camera leaning.

The easy fix is a wide angle lens set farther back and squarely on a tripod at the time of taking or alternately it can be done in PP, but this will often result in some unwanted cropping.

See my quick edits, as you can see it's quite subtle, but I hope you will agree worthwhile.
First off, the first photo was about composition, the second was uploaded for lighting questions: I didn't know how to diffuse the strobes enough so the line on the ceiling didn't show/ to lighten the toilet area.

QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
The big but is that for real estate photography, both verticals and horizontals must be vertical and horizontal. Both of your images show tilting of both due to camera leaning
Hmmm. yeah I guess the top one is a little off. Thank you!!

QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
The easy fix is a wide angle lens set farther back and squarely on a tripod at the time of taking or alternately it can be done in PP, but this will often result in some unwanted cropping.

QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
See my quick edits, as you can see it's quite subtle, but I hope you will agree worthwhile.
Thank you !!
I like your edits

QuoteOriginally posted by K David Quote
3- If you're selling homes in Portland, get the Chicago Cubs mug out of the picture. It would be worth having a home photo kit you carry with you that has a mug from the local college, some old B&W photos in frames that you could put on shelves or counters, a plastic vase with some plastic flowers (so the vase doesn't break) and so forth. Those kinds of things would allow you to control your settings a bit more and make sure that all your photos have a local feel.
LOVE the idea of carrying a mug /BW photos around! Perfect! Flowers/ vase is awesome idea. Thank you so much!
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