Real Estate Photography

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by PhilGarber, Aug 24, 2009.

  1. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Hi-

    I'm interested getting into real estate photography and I have a few questions.

    1) Is this done as stand alone work or do photographers just pick up such things as jobs?

    2) Why kind of set up would I need? I have a 350D with an IS 18-55mm lens and a Tital tripod. What other things would I need? What flash? Would I need lighting?

    3) Is this job open to minors? I'm 14 and can legally get a working permit in NJ. Can this work be done without a degree?

    Thanks,

    Phil,
     
  2. Big

    Big TPF Noob!

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    I'd talk to Manaheim on here. He does real estate and does a very good job. He could probably lead you in the direction...
     
  3. K8-90

    K8-90 TPF Noob!

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    I have no experience in the feild, but here are my thoughts anyways:

    When we were moving, our realestate company took photos of our house. They did them in HDR, and I think worked quite well.

    I also know this ( ByTheOwner.com - Real Estate Canada - Homes "for sale by owner" - Sell your house ) site/realestate group takes HDR photos aswell. Some are a bit weird, but I think for the most part they are successful for the realestate job, though not always good photography.

    The other thing is to use a wideangle lens and a tripod, both of which you have!

    Hope some of that's usefull!
     
  4. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Thanks guys! I'm sure Chris will post here soon.
     
  5. c.cloudwalker

    c.cloudwalker TPF Noob!

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    There are all kinds of different things being done in real estate photography these days. In my neck of the wood most agents do virtual tours.

    You need to check the websites of your local agencies to see what is done in your area. But at 14 you've got a major problem. How will you get to the jobs?

    At your age, I would try and do fairs, flea markets and such events that you can do on the weekends. Shoot stuff that appeals easily to people (flowers, birds, some artsy stuff but not too artsy, etc), mat some prints and try to sell them. People want to spend money when they go to those things and if you don't price them too high you might be surprised.

    Do a calendar and sell it door to door in December. Put one together, show it off and take orders. Make sure you take a deposit (be sure to have a receipt book with you) that covers the cost of making the calendar in case they change their mind :lol:

    Be creative. If I sit here five more minutes thinking about this I'll probably come up with another ten ideas.
     
  6. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Thanks Cloud! That was really helpful.
     
  7. c.cloudwalker

    c.cloudwalker TPF Noob!

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    Take advantage of your age. I would think moms would love to buy from a kid.

    How about shooting young kids birthday parties in your neighborhood? I have never heard of it being done by pros (who knows?) but the expectations wouldn't be quite like for a wedding while you could practice the same kinds of skills. Of course there's alway a bit of a risk doing that kind of work without insurance.

    Just look around your town and you'll probably come up with ideas.
     
  8. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Thanks again Cloud!
     
  9. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Any more opinions?
     
  10. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are TPF Noob!

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    Hi Phil,

    The hardest part of RE photography is that you have to market yourself like crazy. You have to convince the realtors that your service is of use to them. It's not easy, because your fee comes out of their pocket.

    It's a three-legged stool: Marketing, shooting, processing. You have to become extremely skilled in all three. This takes tons of practice and dedication. If you only have two solid legs of the three, you're going to fall on your....well, you get the idea. :D

    Equipment-wise, your lens, to be honest, could stand an upgrade. The general consensus is that you need a good 10-20mm; many (including me) use the Sigma. There's also a Canon 10-22mm but it's pretty pricy. But hey, mess around with the 18-55mm until you're sure this is something you want to pursue.

    You'll need at least one external flash, for starters, unless you want to go the HDR route. Again, lots of practice needed for both.

    You can get by with a fairly inexpensive tripod for now if budget is a big concern.

    Franky, I doubt that you'll get any serious consideration as a 14-year-old, but don't let that stop you from learning all you can. By the time you're an adult you'll have mad skills that us older farts will envy.

    It's difficult, but I'll leave you with something positive: Go browse the real estate listings. I'll wager you're already a better shooter than the images you see online.

    If you have any more specific questions, ask away.

    And good luck!

    Here's something to get you started:

    Wandering around in this site whenever you can: Photography For Real Estate

    And its Flickr group:
    Flickr: Photography for Real Estate discussion topics

    Jon
     
  11. PhilGarber

    PhilGarber TPF Noob!

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    Thanks Jon! Since I'm a minor with no experience, I figure I'd say something like this: "I have no experience in real estate photography but I can be of use to you and your business because of my general photography experience". Also, marketing won't be a problem because I'll be working for some friends of my dad.
     
  12. DeadEye

    DeadEye TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    You will need at least 2 lens. I use a 24-70 and a 15mm. Off camera flash (but that a bit over kill) .

    You will have the correct for lens distortion in PP.

    To do it right on most homes it takes a day. Shoot one side in morning light and other side in afternoon light. The inside anytime.

    As said above this comes straight from the listing agents pocket so you gotta kiss up to the agents needs.

    Most agents shoot it there self with a P&S, or use circle pix. They are your competioion so you gotta show you are sooo much better than that virtual tour. They have a camera with a fish lens on a motorized tripod that spins a circle snapping frames then turned into a VT. Distortion and all. They dont even light the room other than turning on whats there. Ohhh and they are cheep.

    This is what most agents need. Good quality pix. Remove the lens distortion
    perhaps and HDR of front (NOT A KOOKY ONE).

    They are in a HUGE HURRY to put them online so dont delay on PP.

    They LOVE online gallery ( I use the ZEN PHOTO add on to my web sight )
    this does several things for you. Dont gotta email them. They want small pix to upload to there sight and zen gives the right size but they can double click to get full if they want it.

    This reduces there workload.

    Find an agent and shoot a home for free,just one. Then they will use you and recomend you to other agents.

    They (the agent) never have wide enough glass so get a 17mm or so.

    Cheers Dan
     

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