Real Estate Retouching

Most of the original photography work that we do involves photo retouching of some kind. In real estate marketing, it is important to accurately preview the experience of actually seeing the property that is being sold. It does no one any good to create expectations that will, upon later experience, be proved false. It also does not help if the visual representation undersells the property’s real value. The point is to be visually interesting and also true.

Here is an example from the archives that is relevant because it involves a very heavy hand in terms of retouching, but is also, in the end, an accurate rendition of the property. This was a case where the limits of the situation while photographing required a good deal of retouching in order to make the photograph an accurate preview of what it is like to actually stand in front of the property.

Beekman_before

As you can see, the original photograph is not representative of the any kind of real experience. It is rather a collection of photographic peculiarities. It also happens to be a very good foundation for the work we needed to do in order to show the property in its true and best light.

1. This primary shot of the building itself had to be taken from ground level from across the street. To do this while also squaring the buildings’ perspective required a the use of a large format camera and and extreme adjustment of the lens resulting in severe vignetting at the top. This also created an optical situation in which the trees overhead create a confusing mass of leaves and branches at the top of the shot.

2. There were tulips blooming in front of the building, but half of these were obscured by a parked car. We took separate shots of the tulips for use in the final composite.

3. The trees and vignette were also blocking out the sky, so we took a separate photograph of just the sky, from the same perspective as the original shot, but from the balcony behind the building.

Beekman_after2

In cleaning up and putting these shots together we were able to create a photograph of the building that is accurate in the sense that it is a true reflection of what it is like to stand in front of the building, and is also visually appealing. This final shot went on the website and served as the cover for the marketing brochure. The building sold even as the real estate market imploded.

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