A stitch in time – A wide-angle lens workaround for real estate photography…

TZ-Lighthouse Panorama 1-2-3-FINAL-SMALL2The above is an example of a stitched photo.  It was the result of blending three separate shots.  I took it when construction on the new Tappan Zee Bridge was just starting and was trying to get one last photo of the original bridge before the work crews moved in. Not one of my favorites, but a decent example of stitching photos together. Sorry I didn’t have a good real estate photo for this post.  Since I use a wide-angle lens for interiors,  I didn’t have an appropriate example.  Another example of a stitched photo is in a previous post of a panorama that will will appear in a photo-show of mine next month.

Two weeks ago I gave a talk at my own brokerage about cameras and agents showing them how they could step things up a notch with their own photographs.  Unfortunately, doing so without spending any money is really almost a non-starter.  The small point-and-shoots have major issues with the size of their sensors that place major constraints on what can be done with them.    Which is why, after giving some general advice about composition and how to draw in the eye of the viewer, I moved onto what camera type of camera they were using.  Unfortunately, for this there were no easy answers.

The sensor problem in a nutshell…

The bigger the sensor, the more expensive the camera.  A few adventuresome souls were stepping up to use entry level DSLR  cameras that the pros use, but most wanted something that could slip into their pocket and was far less expensive.     But no matter how you slice it, the photos from such a camera are going to suffer from some level of graininess.  Interior shots are particularly notorious for such issues.

The “coverage” issue…

Another issue is that when you shoot a room in a house with a point-and-shoot, there is no getting around the fact that these cameras don’t have the “coverage” that you need to take in most of the room.  I see many agent photos that feature things like a “corner” of a room. Sometimes it even looks like they are featuring a table or a sofa rather than the home.

How stitched panorama shots may help…

But creating a panorama of the room by zooming in and taking a  series of 2 to 3 shots, you have  decreased the area that small sensor has to cover and have increased the pixel density overall.  This can solve the coverage issue and at least some of the graininess issues that small sensors deliver – all in one step.   .

Stepping up your real estate photography without completely outsourcing it…

If you want to step it up without outsourcing the entire thing, here are some things that are doable for lower-end listings where budgets are tight.

  1. DO invest in a better (higher end) point-and shoot with a larger sensor (don’t be swayed by pixel density).
  2. Invest in a decent tripod and shoot 2-3 shots in panorama (particularly for interiors you need a tripod to steady the camera).
  3. Invest in some minor lighting because the flash on point-and-shoots is notoriously inadequate for interior work.
  4. Rather than learning photoshop and spending hours being a photo-editor, consider outsourcing the stitching and editing to someone like me so you can be a real estate agent and not a photographer.

These are just some ideas that may help you with listings where it is simply impractical to outsource the photos.  Remember that photos are part of an agent’s brand and that home sellers are more and more particular about photography and marketing generally.  The days of “good enough” are going away with the dodo bird as buyers and sellers alike pour over photos and videos on the internet.

© 2014 – RGHicks – http://fotosonthefly.biz – All rights reserved.

Please feel free to contact me any time regarding the services I offer and for pricing plans.  You call/email is very important to me, and if you have to leave a message, I will get back to you as soon as possible.  I am easy to reach…

by phone or text:  914-374-5529

by email: Ruthmarie.Hicks@gmail.com 

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