Real Estate Photography; How To Set Your Exposures

The above picture is an example of a properly exposed shot. The windows aren’t blown out, and the interior of the home is properly exposed.

The below picture is an example of an improper exposure. Yes, the interior is good, but the windows are completely blown out!

So how do we fix this? Keep reading and learn how!

This quick tutorial is a video we made for Realtors that are shooting indoors for homes they are trying to sell.

We get it, your focus is on customer service, getting buyers into the correct homes, advertising properties, and so much more! If you’re a Realtor that is taking the photos of your properties without hiring a professional photographer you might run into a pretty common problem…..overexposed windows!

We will teach you how to fix this problem pretty easily with any camera that will shoot in Raw and S Log 2! When you shoot in this format your cameras sensor is preserving much more detail allowing you take make insane adjustments in Adobe Photoshop, or any other post processing program.

Please note! This not the professional way to fix overexposed windows. To do it professionally you need to learn how to shoot HDR photos, or learn how to use an external flash!

HDR:

HDR is simply three shots “minimum” that are taken of one image. One is underexposed, one is normal, and one is overexposed. The three photos are then merged in software like Adobe Photoshop allowing you more room to tweak the single merged photo since it has a wider dynamic range.

Think of dynamic range as a straight horizontal line. ————————–

On the far left is complete black. In the middle are the midtones. On the far right it’s completely white. This range, black, to midtones, to whites, are measured in what is called…stops. Learn more about this here.

Cameras are only capable of capturing so much dynamic range. Some cameras are way better than others!

To prove this, set your shutter speed to auto and point your camera at the window. See how the room gets dark? Now, point it in the room! See how the window becomes overexposed? No matter how great the camera, they are still no substitute for the human eye. They can only capture so much dynamic range.

Using an External Flash:

When you are using a flash for fixing overexposed windows, you are setting your aperture or shutter speed to adjust for what is outside of the window. The room will be really dark inside your cameras viewfinder or screen, so you will need to use a powerful external flash….usually pointed upward to fill the room with light. Both the room, AND the window will be exposed correctly if you set your flash settings right. Learn more about how to do this here.

Ok….moving on!

The quick way that we are going to teach you is to shoot in Raw and S Log 2. This setting allows you to make some serious edits in post because it is a setting that preserves all of the details in your image….there are no adjustments being made by the camera! In other other words…it captures more dynamic range. For example, let’s say you are shooting in Auto. This means the camera is doing the work for you in regards to ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed, White Balance, etc… This is almost always bad because you lose so much creativity in post! In the auto setting “effects” are added that can’t be removed!

Anyhoo….here is the video! Check it out, and don’t forget to like our Facebook page to start learning more audio/video production. We also help people one on one through Facebook messenger, as well as teach subjects and answer questions through Facebook page lives!

Don’t forget to like and share this post!

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