Recently I shot some Real Estate photography at the beautiful 38 Dolores St. Apartments in San Francisco, CA. I was amazed by the modern architecture and city views. I was fortunate enough to get access to three of the units, one of which was a Penthouse with a sweeping 180 degree view of San Francisco.
Below, I have posted just a few of the final images, many more to come.
This was shot on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, with a view as far as the eye can see. Fortunately, this particular unit was a model and was already fully furnished.
I had very minimal gear for this photo shoot (on purpose):
- Canon 5D Mark II
- 17-40mm Lens (Canon)
- Shutter Release Cable
- iTunes Playlist (Stevie Wonder, Take 6)
I purposefully did not bring any lighting equipment whatsoever to this shoot. I was determined to use a combination of exposure blending and HDR (High Dynamic Range [imaging]). In short, HDR is useful because the camera simply cannot capture the full dynamic range (brightest to darkest spots) all in one shot. Typically, if you expose for outside of the window, the interior would be completely dark. Conversely if you expose for the interior, the outside of the window would be so blown out that all you would see is bright white light. HDR requires taking multiple shots (tripod is needed to keep the camera steady) of varying exposures at 2 stop increments. That allows me to blend those multiple exposures in Adobe HDR Pro (or any similar HDR software) in order to retain all of the details in the highlights, as well as in the shadows with little to no grain (or noise).
As powerful as these new DSLR cameras are, they simply cannot replicate the natural God-given HDR our eyes use every second of the day to process true light. This is a relatively easy process which allows me to not have to carry around a ton of lighting equipment; but it does add more time in post-production since you will be processing 5 frames in order to create just 1 photo. I utilize Adobe Bridge to manage all of my photos and collections. 90% of my photo editing is done using Adobe Camera Raw, where I color correct, adjust white balance, correct exposure/contrast/clarity/etc. After first doing minor adjustments to the 5 individual exposure shots, I then combine them using Adobe HDR Pro. From there I create a single 32 bit image from the 5, and continue my edits in Adobe Camera Raw.
In Real Estate Photography, it is advantageous to use a wide angle lens in order to capture as much of the room as possible. In this particular photo, I was able to capture the bedroom, living room, and part of the dining room table all in the same frame. That is not possible with a smartphone or a cheap point-and-shoot camera. I was using my Canon 17-40mm lens on a tripod for this shot.
All photos posted in this blog post were created by and copyrighted by Charlie Kaine Photography, and cannot be reproduced or used in anyway without the expressed written consent of Charlie Kaine Photography.