Many times we wonder how pro photographers take breathtaking interior photography. We even cherish shooting such interior photography. But how to develop this skill? Definitely, it’s not rocket science. Apparently, it’s tricky to take such posh photography but with basic and advanced knowledge of interior photography, you can nail your interior photoshoot.
All you need for interior photography is patience, top-quality gadgets, and creativity. This write-up will deal with interior photography at length. So, if you want to enrich your knowledge about this cracking niche of photography, this blog will come in handy for you.
Before we discuss interior photography tips and tricks, it’s key to understand the definition first. Interior photography basically is capturing photos of indoor spaces, be it rooms, furniture, walls, home décor, or any other indoor set-up.
Generally, you may think this pertains only to houses or apartments but it can even encompass the commercial environment. The best part of interior photography is it expands to other fields of photography like real-estate photography, architectural photography, etc.
So, if you pick up this particular type of photography, you can even contribute to real-estate and architectural photography. So, it’s killing 2 birds with 1 stone. Given the demand for interior photography, we have picked this topic to write on.
A wealth of photography equipment is available to assist you to capture splendid interior shots. But there are at least 4 gadgets that you mandatorily need for nailing your interior photography. Let’s check them out-
The first equipment you need for an interior photoshoot is a digital camera, especially a mirrorless camera or a DSLR. These cameras provide freedom in experimenting with lenses. Besides, there is immense control in manual mode for camera settings like exposure, shutter speed, focal length, and ISO.
For a newbie or rookie interior photographer, a DSLR camera will provide all the essential modes and settings they need to shoot interior images. Aside from that, smartphones are able to take breathtaking interior photos as well, when paired with manual camera apps.
Tripod is always recommended in shooting interior photos. Whether you leverage a heavy telephoto lens or need a room’s lines matched up in your viewfinder, a tripod will resist camera shake and stabilize your camera leading to crisper, clearer, and sharper final images.
When it comes to interior photoshoots, the use of light plays a pivotal role in generating output. Hence, set up your camera with a flash attachment to achieve brighter, more appealing, and more vivid images. You can also go on to expand your kit to incorporate speed lights, bounces, and shoot-through umbrellas for a more balanced light presence.
There is no way to miss out on camera lenses when we are dealing with interior photography. In interior photography, a standard zoom lens or prime lens will be more than enough for clicking both close-up shots and macro shots.
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Good interior photography is about using maximum natural light, space, and accessories. It isn’t just about using a wide-angle lens to capture the whole space, it is about taking lifestyle type of photographs of furniture, materials, and patterns to create a pleasing composition.
Now, it’s time to cut to the chase. Yeah, we will now list down 18 fascinating interior photography tips that would make a real difference to your interior photoshoot. No matter whether you are a newbie or a pro photographer, you will get substance from this write-up.
Let’s get in….
If you want to achieve a professional outcome, there is no alternative to planning your interior photography in advance. You should be in touch with your client beforehand. This will ease the process of executing your job.
You will also apprehend what specific interior photographs they wish for each room. Besides, you should also pay a site visit prior to the shoot date which will let you get an idea of what spots will look best for photography. You’ll also get to know what type of details or vignettes you can get and how the light comes in at different times of the day.
On top of that, you can know about the orientation of the building which is very crucial. It will help you to make out the direction of strong sunshine and avoid overexposing the room. Another benefit of a site visit is getting clear on what gear and gadgets you need to leverage throughout the interior photography shoot.
Without any doubt, the best source of light for interior photography is the use of natural lights. Artificial lights can’t beat it when it comes to taking top-notch interior photography. It makes a ton of difference when you’re using natural light vs flashlight.
Light bulbs cause terrible effects in photography, they cast shadows and color lines which are definitely not something a professional would like to use. In case you need to use artificial light, try to use LED bulbs since they cast less shadow and lines.
They don’t necessarily make the photo as grand as natural light but they do seem to work better than those light bulbs. One of the reasons fluorescent bulbs aren’t advised to use is because of the color contrast they induce that makes photography looks terrible. All in one, it is always advisable to use natural lights whenever possible.
Oftentimes, certain elements of exposure may look unlikely to be perfectly exposed. Like a part of the shot may come out underexposed due to the shortfall of light. It may also be due to the effect of backlight.
How to fix such issues? Fill flash is the solution in such cases. With a fill flash, you can brighten the necessary areas of your likely shots. Apart from that, a part of your shooting area can also contain shadows that require to be eliminated.
By aiming your flash at the ceiling and walls behind you, you can minimize the shadows in the spot in front of you. It’s possible to do this both on-camera and off-camera. You can even retain the flash in your hand pointed at the ceiling.
In interior photography, stability is key to bringing out stellar shots as frames are likely to contain small details. Handheld shots aren’t safe to steady the camera. This is where the use of tripod comes into play.
With your camera mounted on the tripod, shutter speed won’t be a big deal. When it comes to aperture, you can set it between F/9 and F/11. And ISO can be kept low to output sharp interior shots as high ISO can produce excessive noise.
Collaboration with clients plays a vital role in interior photoshoots. This means taking your time to set up each shot and ensuring that your client is taking part in each setup.
One method to carry out this is to tether your camera to a laptop or tablet. What tethering does is it allows your laptop or tablet to display the photos. It displays the photos as they’re shot in real-time. You can also put your laptop or tablet in “Live View” mode. However, it relies on what system you’re using.
Live View mode lets the client help style the space for every shot before you take any snaps. This also aids in minimizing how many photos you have to sift through during editing. In this case, your client plays an active role in making sure that each shot looks exactly how they want it. This also lets them get the most out of their investment.
Interior photography is full of minute details. You have to capture stray objects and subtle elements of rooms and furniture. Compared to real estate photography, interior or even architectural photography is different and complex.
You need to apply more time and energy to each part of the photography process, including post-production. The expectations also mount while working with interior designers or builders to achieve an intended outcome.
Interior photography process demands a very collaborative approach and focuses on details. You need to spend enough time meeting your client, styling, and even in the editing process. The end goal is always to produce mesmerizing interior photographs.
In interior photography, correct exposure is vital to notch up killer compositions. If your shots include windows, bracketing 3-4 exposures for those shots can benefit you immensely. With that, you will get underexposed or darker frames letting you show the view outside the windows.
You will also get middle exposures that will help to balance out the bright highlights. At the same time, you will also get a shot that is over-exposed enough to have vibrant shadows.
Apart from that, leverage large soft brushes in Photoshop when it comes to blending layers to maintain the natural vibe. Interior photography needs your full focus throughout the whole process. You’ll want to skip too much automation in order that you can maintain quality control for your clients.
In real estate, you will be prone to emphasizing how large the space is by displaying wider shots. But in interior design photography, wider shots don’t necessarily work rather you have to focus more on the design.
For interior photography, you shouldn’t go wider than 24mm for full frame (Not more than 16mm for cropped sensor) as you are unlikely to cover an entire room in one single shot. So, it’s better to take multiple shots from different angles and bring out premium compositions.
On top of that, if you have enough room, distance yourself further from the composition and make use of a tighter lens like 50mm or 70mm. This minimizes the chance of lens distortion as well.
Interior photography without depth is bland and shoddy. Leverage styling items and focus on furniture placement to achieve the required depth in your compositions. It will spice up and add a luxurious feel to the spot.
You also need to make sure that your eye lands on the area that you would like to highlight. For example, any part in the foreground can sneak into the frame. This can happen if the color is fluorescent, excessively in-focus, or if there’s too much of it is visible in the shot.
Don’t forget to make sure that your f-stop is consistent with the photo part to get sharp output. Interior photos normally demand f-stops in the f/8 to f/16 range. You can, however, always go for a lower f-stop if it contributes to generating the depth that you want.
Interior rooms are likely to contain clutter here and there and no doubt, a room full of junk will look dull and disgusting. All your attempts will go in vain if your shooting spot remains messy and chaotic. An untidy spot will not only cause distraction but also wreck your interior photography.
Here, you have to think like an interior designer and spend a bit of time laying out a room before you kick off taking shots. Focus on electric wires and cables in every room. Unplug and untangle electrical cords, and conceal objects like remotes and shoes.
Also, take the time to dust off furniture, walls, countertops, and window frames to make sure the room looks its very best. Once you are satisfied with the look of your room, you can go for taking shots.
It may be a known fact to clear the clutter but still, it’s a reminder lest you might forget about it. You always crave to see your counter-top marble exquisitely. You wish to view the top of your living room table free of any distracting objects.
As an interior photographer, it’s part of your job to notify your client on how to equip the space for getting peachy photos. You can even go for relaying to showcase the value of a clean space before the photoshoot.
Even after your arrival at the venue, take a look around the space. Don’t hesitate to provide your client with any recommendations on surfaces that you want them to clear up. No doubt, clients make a higher investment in your services and they will be looking forward to a mind-blowing interior photoshoot.
Every time, you won’t get things ready-made for yourself. That you come to a location and capture shots blindly. Rather, there will be occasions when you have to come up with an innovative approach. For example, you may encounter a situation where you have to shoot a room that is simply too small to fit in a photo.
This is where a creative approach will come in handy. When you find yourself in such a situation, try taking shots from an adjoining hallway or room that provides a different perspective. Photographing with this type of approach in mind gives an additional interest to interior photography.
Interior photography is packed with horizontal and vertical lines in tight spaces. If the lines in your interior photo are slightly off-kilter, the balance of your photo will be disrupted and viewers will be distracted from the composition.
For example, the corner of a room may show up in angle with the other portion of your photograph. While shooting an interior space, don’t forget to ensure that the lines of walls, lamps, and windows look dead straight and balanced.
Another fact is, our brain is capable of fathoming that doors are vertical even if we observe them from an angled view, but the camera isn’t able to sense that. Leveraging a tripod and a tripod head with bubble levels makes it easier to keep the lines straight and balanced!
When it comes to photographing interiors, composition is what guides most shots. This implies that you need to brush up on the basics, right from balance, color, leading lines, and depth, to white space.
Focusing on composition will level up an image. It presents a particular photo as a work of art, rather than a photo that documents something. Artful interior design photography composition also spices up design elements and makes them stand out. And these are what your client is looking to showcase, right?
If you aren’t sure where, to begin with picking up about composition, begin with the rule of thirds. Leverage the rule of thirds to guide composition in your work for a number of weeks. Then, you can move on to another principle like leading lines.
The same scene will show up differently from different angles. And it’s natural to happen. But what’s crucial here is making necessary tweaks on different shots. If you’re snapping the same scene from varying directions, tweaking will perfect the styling.
You have to make sure that each object is visible and easily defined. You wouldn’t like some items getting concealed behind things or becoming hazy. It will bring out a puzzling shot as the viewer isn’t aware of what they’re supposed to be looking at.
The bottom line is you would surely want a vase to look like a vase, a glass to look like glass, and a book also resembles a book.
It’s key for a photo to tell a story and serve a purpose, be it an interior photo or any other genre of the photo. You need to clarify what are you striving to showcase. On what are you attempting to draw the viewer’s attention?
Make sure that whatever you’re aiming to capture is the center of the show. While photographing interiors, take away any distracting objects in the background to create a clean backdrop. Your aim is to motivate and display the best version of that space.
With that purpose, you should be prone to styling interior items a bit, folding a blanket, fluffing up a cushion, or opening a magazine. These acts will ensure a mind-blowing interior photoshoot.
Unlike real estate photography, interior photography works well in overcast conditions. One of the things that highly contribute to producing spectacular interior shots is the clouds. It functions as a large softbox bringing out graceful soft shadows.
The drawback of sunny conditions for interior photography is that the sunlight creates a sharp difference between light and dark indoors. This gets even more visible especially when the sun is shining and radiating light directly through the window. Hence, it’s a matter of deep thought to shoot interior photography in sunny conditions.
Last but not the least, it’s editing. It’s where you can create real magic! Yeah, you can’t achieve the best result for your photography unless you edit your interior photographs. You can edit your photos with different types of editing software. But the best is to use Adobe Photoshop which will give you professional results.
However, you can also get your interior imagery edited with pro photo editors and enhancers. This will save you plenty of time as well. Pro photo retouchers, blending their skills with the knowledge of Photoshop end up creating masterpieces of your interior snapshots.
Interior photography isn’t a piece of cake. It’s an uphill task to ace interior photography. And that’s why we have put forth this comprehensive guide before you. It’s important that you follow each and every of the above hacks.
Before we wind up, we would like to remind few more things. Remember to gear up yourself the night before your shoot. Charge your batteries well and pack all your kits. While carrying out interior photography shots, make sure to shoot from an appropriate height. And keep the camera as upright as possible to avoid added distortion.
That’s all we have in this exhaustive blog on interior photography. Until we come up with another exciting blog, stay safe and healthy!