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Real Estate Photography - Should It Be Art?

With the invention of the photo camera everyone, who uses it tries to make his images more beautiful and meaningful. Today, photography is regarded to be an artistic activity and numerous exhibitions displaying photos take place all around the globe.

Real Estate photography takes a separate place in the field as it is of utmost importance to provide the potential buyers with listings that will refer to their emotions. Only in this case, the probability of selling a home will be several times higher.

It is not enough to be a talented photographer to work in the real estate business. You should combine designer, director, technical and many other skills to create pieces of visual arts. That is why in this article we will focus on the information that will help ordinary photographers transform their routine work in the creation of real estate business masterpieces.

The art of real estate photography

In one of his articles, architectural photographer Scott Hargis calls real estate photography “the art of making a property look its best”. It is difficult not to agree with this point as the percentage of sold property with amateur photos is incredibly low, let alone listings without images at all.

High-quality and bright images enhance marketability and it results in less time property spends on the market. The task of a photographer is to create a unique look and style of every room, but only a talented and creative person can do that. Of course, there are some tips how to improve your real estate photos and we will focus on them too, but without a professional vision and necessary skills, it is impossible to create a piece of art.

What to consider for beginners in real estate photography

If a person decides to enter a real estate industry in the role of a photographer, he should be ready for severe competition. Either you need to ask less money to attract clients (though it may also lead to questions “what’s wrong with you?”), or do your job professionally and creatively to look outstanding.

Whether you decide to change a direction you work in or try your hand in anything new, take into account the following tips for beginners:

  1. Avoid shooting too wide not to create an unrealistic feeling of space.
  2. Use different point composition apart from the corner only.
  3. Making a landscape photo check that all four constituent parts like fore-, mid-, background and sky were on the image.
  4. Blend several images together to mask some proper reflections or shades.
  5. Move the tripod higher to achieve a grandiose feel and lower to opt for intimacy.
  6. Get several light sources instead of the flash to prevent shadows and shoot to the right.
  7. Camera must be leveled to make lines on the image straight and well-positioned.
  8. Find your best settings and use saturation sliders.

These simple tips will help you to avoid senseless shots. Almost all your photos will deserve right to be shown to the real estate agent and added to the listings. However, unfortunately they will still have to go a mile to become art pieces as it is not enough to make them. All photos should be edited to achieve an appealing look.

Tricks to make photos look appealing

Apart from several traditional pieces of advice from professionals, there are some interesting findings of experienced photographers to achieve a better look of the images. Except for tips for beginners, there are two more groups to consider:

1. Architecture and interior photographs.

Apart from the listings real estate photos are published in the magazines or ordered by professional designers, architects, and home builders. In this case, you can improve the quality of your photographs by shooting home exterior in the twilight, control reflections using flags and scrims, fake warm sunlight with additional light or stage some furniture to achieve a completed look.

2. Commercial and advertising photographs.

It is not a discovery that commercial property is very popular today too. Whether your customer wishes to sell or get rent for it, there are some tricks how to make it more attractive. Make several twilight photos if it is a restaurant or cafe, incorporate people on the photos to make them lively, light multiple locations of every room, create an inviting atmosphere with some virtual staging techniques etc.

Advice from professional photographers

Many years of photographer experience have allowed making some apparent conclusions characteristic of modern real estate business:

  • Prefer a wide angle camera lens to emphasize space;
  • Look through the images made by experts to make necessary conclusions;
  • Use landscape orientation rather than vertical one;
  • Dedicate time for every shot;
  • Make an emphasis on the best room features;
  • Rooms must be prepared for shooting by photographer in particular;
  • Add bright colors like natural flowers or cushions to add life to your photos;
  • Shooting at dusk makes all the lighting more distinct;
  • Check your photos for distortions.


Though it may seem that there is nothing difficult in the photographer job, in reality, you should be an educated and well-read person to learn all those important issues. Without them, your camera is only a toy in the hands of a clumsy child. We will never call some strange drawings of a kid a masterpiece, the same situation is with photos too. Professional and talented work is recognized immediately and it makes its significant contribution to the real estate industry.

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