Blog Tag: photography tips

Virtual Tour Photography Tips

When it comes to virtual tour photography, interior shots are some of the most important ones to get right so that your 360 virtual tour looks professional and clean. If you are just getting into virtual tour photography and are looking for some great tips for your upcoming virtual tour shoots, then this short but helpful article will help you out. Interior photography may at first sound easy, but can actually be quite challenging considering exposures and mixed lighting. Here are 10 tips for interior photography!

1. Try Different Perspectives – Taking multiple shots from different angles while focusing on the main aspects of a room will help you capture the best photos. You will also have a variety of images to choose from afterwards.

2. Use Correct Lighting – The goal is to make sure your photos are balanced with light and that there are no over or under-lit spots. Make good use of the natural light that is available inside, turn off lamps, play with shades, and test out the different types of lighting until you get a nice natural look in the shot. Natural and soft light is the best for interior photography and can usually be achieved during early morning or late afternoons.

3. Use A Wide Angle Lens – Using a wide angle lens for smaller rooms such as bathrooms can be very useful when trying to capture the entire setting.

4. Stage Your Shots – Make room in the area so that the photos look clean and organized. Less clutter will provide you with better professional looking photos. Rearrange accessories to focus on certain areas within the shot.  Got empty rooms?  Use www.virtualhousestaging.com

5. Keep Your Photos Straight – To prevent blur in your images, use a solid tripod and test out a timer to prevent any shaking and blurring. You want to make sure your photography is sharp and within focus.

6. Know Your Aperture – If you are shooting close-ups or focusing on certain objects in a space, it is very important to know how to use your aperture. The smaller your aperture number, the shallower your depth of field. The larger your aperture, the more in focus and sharp everything will be within the photo.

More about aperture here – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aperture

To become a professional virtual tour photographer, you will need to invest time into learning both the basics and advanced skills but the more you photograph, the better you will become. Keep testing out different methods and settings until you are familiar with your camera and the presets that work best for you and your photography. Have fun!

Team RTV

RTV, Inc
www.RealTourVision.com
Virtual Tour Software & Digital Marketing Training


Hit Me With Your Best Shot!

Tips for photographing virtual tours of real estate property interiors:

When photographing your real estate property for a virtual tour, you want to present your best face. You make sure everything is clean and neat, and pay attention to the details that will show in your photos—so why do your images still look less than amazing?

The fact is, you don’t need truckloads of professional equipment or years of practice to take great interior shots of your property. Follow these tips for cleaner, more attractive photos that showcase the best of your offerings.

Equipment checklist
The list of equipment you need for excellent photos is fairly short: a digital camera and a tripod. The tripod doesn’t have to be expensive or fancy—you just need one that prevents the slight movement of your hands as you press the shutter, to prevent any distortion of the resulting image. As for the camera, you’ll need one with a flash, and a non-distorting lens. Wide angle cameras work well for photographing real estate interiors, but make sure it’s not too wide, unless you’re prepared to do some straightening in a photo editing program.

Let there be light
Before you start photographing, turn on every light in the house. Light adds more depth and color variance to your images, automatically enhancing the appeal of the photos. However, you’ll have to check each room to find any light that shows up as a reflection in pictures, windows, or mirrors, and either redirect them or turn them off.

Bright, direct sun through a window can ruin your shot, so take photos for your 360 tours at a time of day when the light is lower or higher than the windows. The best days for interior photography are overcast—so when the skies are cloudy, take advantage of the ideal conditions.

Positioning your shots
When choosing shots, keep in mind that you can’t fit an entire room in a single photo. Of course, with your virtual tour, you’ll be able to assemble a panoramic view from multiple photos—so stick to shooting one area at a time. Make sure that the lines of the room are straight, both horizontally and vertically.

Experiment with where you stand to take the shots. Backing into corners can yield great photos for your home tours. You may achieve better results by kneeling or sitting on a stool while shooting. Just be sure to check mirrors and windows, so you don’t accidentally photograph your own reflection!

Mark Jay Profile Image

Mark Jay Virtual Tours
Wisconsin Virtual Tours
Order a virtual tour: (414) 771-7713


The Perfect Real Estate Photo

Who says, there’s no such thing as “perfect thing “? In real estate world, property photos that enable the property to get sold are what you called perfect photo.  A properly presented photo will certainly entice any possible buyer to visit the exact location and may even end up closing the deal for the particular property. In order to produce such images, there are lots of things to consider such as, the camera’s megapixel count, lens, resolution and its sensitivity of low light. It is essential that a specific gadget will be able to crop up an ideal image of the property even when light source is not sufficient.

During daytime is the most ideal time to take a photo and create a 360 virtual tour of a certain property. The best source of light that directly hits the subject is the sun, specifically when taking photos of the front area of the house; sunlight gives the best color saturation in the image and panorama. While when taking pictures for your virtual tour of the different rooms and other areas of the property, it is advisable to open all possible light entry so that the camera will be able to catch every little detail of each rooms. Avoid using direct flash on interior shots to keep off from unwanted images within the photo. Adjust for even lights within the specific area to avoid too dark or too bright areas. When shooting and the room looks dark, it is better to turn on all the existing light in the room to create a positive effect on the image.

There could be no better light like the sunlight; its natural effect adds a positive impression on the image. A lot of technique can be done with adjusting, adding and even light minimizing; it all basically depends on what kind of result you want for your real estate virtual tour and photo shoot.

Appropriate lighting is really important in taking real estate photos. This will maximize the selling value of the property on the market. The idea will be much easier and possible when you understand light’s use and its sources.


How to Make Merlin Steady Cam


Hello RTV virtual tour providers out there. I just wanted to share something very exciting with you all. Recently I made a DIY Merlin Stedicam for under $40. The pro version is about $800. The handle is from a speed jump rope so it has a bearing in it. The universal joint is from a local hobby shop for R/C cars and together they make a handy gimble. I changed my tripod head to a pistol grip ball head for the spherical virtual tour shots and had the two way laying around so I stuck it on the help level the camera.

There are a bunch of YouTube videos on how to make these but this is my version. Just need to practice walking with it. I used a 2.5 lb counterweight which doesn’t bother me but if the rig needs to be lightened they can stack heavy washers and extend the weight down to add leverage to the fulcrum of the gimble to keep the camera upright.

I have also been experimenting with Magic Lantern ISO Overrides. Here is a video to see the difference. Note ISO 100 for a base then look at 160, 320, 640. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4R3nDSISvhg I shot at 100 and 640 and barely had a difference but an increase is shutter speed. Faster shooting is always good for my Myrtle Beach virtual tours!

Dan Conklin
Myrtle Beach
www.conklinmarketing.com
Order a virtual tour: 843-254-8412


Photography Tips From the Pro

Well here I am reporting from beautiful Spokane Washington folks. I’m staring at another week’s virtual tour blog entry and thinking what could I write about this time. It seems to be quite a trick to come up with something on a regular basis. Especially when I’m so busy putting together my virtual tour company here in Spokane.

I had a newbie photographer ask me the other day, “how do you operate the exposure settings” he just could not get the light operating controls on his camera whether it be analog or digital. I pointed out that you have to think of it like a water faucet. The shutter on your camera lets light flow just like a water faucet lets water flow. The aperture is like the wheel handle on that water faucet and you control the amount of water pressure that flows through that faucet. It is the exact same thing for the aperture, you control the amount of flow. Together these two items give you the proper exposure for you shots. Try this next time your on a virtual tour shoot!

It seems to make sense to them when it is explained this way. Cameras have become increasingly automatic, often including automatic exposure and focus so that not too many people actually get to get creative with their cameras controls. Nevertheless, this Spokane virtual tour photographer prefers to use manual operation in order to make my own exposure and focusing decisions.

Whomever may be reading this, you might consider operating the camera manually for your first exposures to help you learn basic camera controls. Then once you have gotten the basics down, you can move on to become a better “artist at your craft” Most people want to know what to do after that to become a better photographer and my answer is always surprisingly consistent. “Take more pictures.” “Shoot, shoot, shoot.” “Persevere.” Just keep after it; you can’t help but improve if you do.”

I know this sounds kind of obvious but it is advice that has worked for me and others in the business. It’s not rocket science, no secrets or inside information. Just simply shooting a bunch is how I have improved my skills and I know that this will work for you too.

See if you can apply some of these techniques to your local virtual tour business. Good luck out there! Good luck all of you out there with your virtual tour business!

Steve Stephens
www.digitalshowcasevr.com
Spokane Virtual Tours
Order a virtual tour – 509 868-4043