Starting Real Estate Photography with nothing more than a tripod and camera, I was unaware of the ramifications of only using HDR with only ambient lighting. Muddy images – grainy and mis-colored edging combined with something that just looks off. It’s not crisp and clean like some photos you see in magazine articles.
Well no more I say! Tomorrow is the day flash photography will be integrated with HDR to bring out those crisp edges and clear whites. Simply by going on Amazon and looking for the highest rated flashes + radio transmitter/receiver, my post production time should be reduced by 60%.
Here is the technique I’ll be using in numbered steps:
- Frame the shot and spot meter the darkest area. Using an aperture (priority) of around f8-f9 finding the correct shutter speed. (ISO hopefully at 200 or less)
- Using the shutter speed suggested, go ahead and bring that up 1 stop to ensure the darks will actually be dark enough to compensate for the flash.
- Setup flashes accordingly on tripods. More than likely there will be 1 next to the camera and others in viewable rooms or highlighting areas that we want to showoff.
- Take a few test shots identifying any changes that need to be made. This will be the baseline shot with proper color balance and detail.
- Next I’ll probably turn the flashes off and bracket 5-7 shots starting with the fastest shutter speed (from item 2).
- In post production I’ll then process the bracketed images using Photomatix or similar followed by using layer masks on the HDR image and baseline (flash) image.
- Using the brush tool I’ll then put in the details that were muddled by HDR while still retaining the correct ambiance.