Take your Real Estate Photos up a Notch with Post-Processing and Image Editing
What is post-processing, many people wonder. If your camera is good enough, do you really need to do this?
Absolutely! As a home stager and interior photographer, I pay attention to a lot details and light the rooms with several flashes at a time, which takes me about 1.5 hours on site for the typical Calgary, AB home.
But then I'm in it for at least that long afterwards on my computer!
These are the typical things I adjust and/or correct on many of the photos I take:
- White Balance - no camera gets this right all of the time. And I ensure that the white balance is consistent throughout a property so that the same paint color looks the same in every shot. It really helps a viewer know they are looking at the same area from a different perspective.
- Straightening - I started out using a tripod, but the reality is that I just can't squeeze myself with a tripod into many of the corners I like to shoot from. I have a really good eye, but it's impossible to not tilt at least a few times during a shoot . . . and that just has to be corrected!
- Lighting - Sometimes I lift the shadows a little, sometimes I pull down the highlights to get better definition around windows . . . the purpose being to ensure that details are visible and clear.
- Saturation - I go a little overboard here, especially on the exterior photos, but I find that the MLS site really depletes an image of so much color! This is a necessity to stand out from the others.
- Sharpening - again, the algorithms on most MLS sites horribly compress the photos and no matter how hard you worked making them look awesome on your computer, they'll look like crap once they get uploaded. Again, this is a necessity.
- Secret Sauce - there a few other parameters I adjust here and there to give the images a look that is unique to me!
Here is an exterior shot of a SW Calgary home, right out of the camera (I took this with my Canon G11 on a pole to get an elevated perspective . . . I don't usually hand hold this crooked!) The sun was really harsh and washed out the color.
And here it is after I've applied my adjustments:
Here is an interior real estate photo of the same SW Calgary Home before processing (staged by home owner):
And after applying my post-processing magic:
These extra steps add that little extra punch and polish!
If you're curious, I use Lightroom, PTLens, and Photoshop when I have to clone something more than just a spot. Lightroom (a Photoshop product) is my main program for organizing, developing and creating my photo products (prints, web images, slideshows).