So you've just finished your latest
home building project; time to take some great photos to show it off. To
save yourself the expense of hiring a professional, here are a few
steps to take to ensure your photos will be of the highest quality
The exterior of any new home is the first impression most people
have and to best sell yourself and your work, high quality exterior
photos are a must. Many of the basic principles of interior
photography can be applied to shooting exteriors.
Start by setting your camera to the maximum quality possible. You
can always downsize your images later for email. Also ensure your
lens is clean and clear of fingerprints or smudges that'll blur your
of day is the single most important factor when considering
photographing the exterior of your new home. The ideal time
to shoot will vary as this depends upon which direction the home
faces. South facing fašade can be shot most of the day though east
is best early in the day and conversely, west facing will work best
in the afternoon. As a basic rule, keep the sun over your shoulder
but keep an eye on where your shadow falls.
Shooting exteriors at twilight will give your home a prestigious
feel. While more effort is involved than daylight photos, the
results are rewarding and worthwhile. About ten minutes after the
sun sets, the sky turns a deep blue. Shooting at this time, with all
the interior lights on will create an inviting atmosphere in your
To add some extra light to your fašade, a common builders light on a
stand can be used. Use the light sparingly to highlight garden beds
and lawn being careful not to overuse it. Camera flash is less than
ideal for exteriors as the scale of most buildings will be too large
to light this way.
Set your camera to its widest setting and get back far enough so
that you can include the whole house in the frame. Try and avoid
having the garage in the foreground and if possible shoot from the
opposite side to minimize its size. Also, keep an eye out for any
unwanted reflections in the windows of the building.
important to keep your camera level both vertically and
horizontally. If the camera isn't straight, the home will appear
distorted. A ladder is always a good idea to gain a higher
viewpoint, particularly when attempting to include the roofline of a
two-story home. If you do have to tilt the camera to include
the whole building, ensure the camera is still kept level
horizontally. A dedicated spirit level, available from camera shops,
can be used for this purpose.
Try and use a tripod when photographing both exteriors and
interiors. Not only will this provide the sharpest results, it will
also make it easier to ensure your camera is kept straight and
level. Due to long exposure times in low light, a tripod is always
required with twilight shoots.
As with interiors, photographing exteriors requires a basic level of
styling. Ensure all blinds and curtains are open and even, turn on
interior lighting including lamps and watch out for potential
eyesores such as rubbish bins, hoses and doormats. To brighten
things up, you could always add some potted plants. Finally don't
forget to close garage doors and move any cars that might be in the
Most digital cameras come with basic image manipulation software.
Once you've downloaded your images onto the computer, you should be
able to use this software to easily enhance them. Common adjustments
include lightening and darkening, adjusting color saturation, cropping and
resizing for web or email format as well as correcting color
balance. While this is a solution to 'repairing' images, it's always
important to start with the best composed and exposed image
Above all, put in the extra effort and you will be duly rewarded. Be
critical of your photos and take time to refine them - the results
will speak for themselves.
is a freelance architectural photographer based in