Amateur compared to Professional photography

Amateur compared to Professional photography

I was hired by an agent to photograph a home for their client. The seller had previously had their home on the market as a FSBO before this agent listed their property. The seller had some decent camera equipment and was into photography, so they took their own photos when they had it listed FSBO. Long story short, when I arrived at the home to take the photos, the seller asked me if I would mind if he could watch and learn. I said “Sure, why not?”

After I set up 2 flashes and fired the first shot, I showed him my camera and he said “WOW. Those flashes make so much of a difference. I didn’t think they would help that much.” Well, it isn’t just having the flashes that makes a difference. It’s also knowing how to use them. Knowing how to use your equipment is more important than the actual equipment itself. Here’s a sample from their house (use with permission). Note that each of these comparison sets of photos are directly from the MLS system, as indicated by the logo. In this first photo, there are 3 major things to note, other than the staging changes. First, the outdoor exposure is much better in my photo. Second, the wall and ceiling under the loft area should be as smooth as in my photo. Third, the brightness of my photo is much better than the first image. Click on any of the images for the full size version.

The left photos are what he had on the MLS when he was a FSBO. I asked him which camera he has and his camera is twice as expensive as my camera. When I got back, I looked at the photos in MLS and got permission to use them in this example. You’ll note a few things about this kitchen. First, I changed the angle of the photo to better show off the tile backsplash.  And second, there is so much more detail in my photo (i think he had the jpg compression level too high).


Then I quickly whipped out my laptop and showed him one of the software packages that I used to edit the photos. . I showed him how easy it was to manipulate areas of the photos with this cool software. His jaw just about hit the floor. I told him that this software has saved me tons of time on each and every photo shoot just because I didn’t have to do the “marching ants dance” to change selective areas of photos. It’s worth every penny.

The differences in these two photos is huge. I allowed the buyer to better visualize the size of the room by showing the whole bed. This photo has a little distortion from being almost too wide, but it’s just on the edge. Second, since we know what is down the hallway, we don’t really need to show the bathroom door. Cutting it off, allowed me to light it up with a flash.


Bottom line is that it’s more than just the equipment that makes the difference. It’s also knowing how to use the equipment properly.

This next shot I took, is virtually the same shot as the original. But notice the differences. You can see that there is enough space for 2 workareas. Also it is picked up and cleaned up.

Other differences in these example photos are because a stager was consulted prior to my photoshoot.

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