HDR Real Estate Photography

09 Jun
June 9, 2011

Special thanks to Ampersand Photography for letting us repost their post to our blog

So you are interested in HDR Real Estate Photography, well lets start off with….

What is HDR Photography.

HDR is an acronym for High Dynamic Range. It is a post-processing task of taking either one image or a series of images, combining them, and adjusting the contrast ratios to do things that are virtually impossible with a single aperture and shutter speed.

Photos in general can’t quite convey exactly how our eye sees an image in real life; there is something in the third dimension that is missing on film, but with HDR photography, photos come to life in a way that viewers can experience them more realistically. As quoted by Trey Ratcliffe

And he is right, when you take a picture and compare it to what your eye sees in real life then their is a big difference. Most of the time your picture does not quite convey what you see. To further elaborate what we have been saying underneath is an example of an HDR image.


As you can see there is almost no underexposure or overexposure on the photo. In this photo you are able to see everything inside as well as outside, therefore representing the property/apartment entirely, as well as giving you a realistic and clear view from inside the property.


The basic procedure:

You start of with 3-5 photos, shot in RAW with different exposures, -2 EV,( -1EV,) 0EV,( +1EV,) +2 EV. These photos are blend into 1 with software such as Photomatix. After this you finish the image, post-production, via Photoshop or Lightroom or …

Here is an example of 5 taken images and the final HDR-result. As you can see we have 2 overexposed, 1 normal exposed and 2 underexposed photos. When blending them into one they give you a more clear view of the room.


What you need:

  • A DSLR-camera (preferably a full-frame such as the Canon 1Ds Mark III or Nikon D3x)
  • A set up camera (Shoot in Raw and bracketing mode, bracket 3-to-5 shots -2 EV,( -1EV,) 0EV,( +1EV,) +2 EV. DSLRs will do this with auto-bracket feature.)
  • A Tripod (assures sharpness)
  • HDR-processing software, I recommend Photomatix Pro (required)
  • Photoshop or Lightroom (recommended) for post-production/finishing the photo
  • and a lot more optional programs are possible
If you are looking for a great HDR-tutorial, then you should go to Trey Ratcliff’s website.


High Dynamic Range (HDR) is a set of techniques that allows a greater dynamic range of luminances between light and dark areas of a scene than normal digital imaging techniques. The intention of HDR is to accurately represent the wide range of intensity levels found in real scenes ranging from direct sunlight to shadows. Due to these techniques we are able to capture a more realistic photo of the object, in this case being a property, then through traditional digital imaging techniques.

Here are some extra photos:

Special thanks again to Ampersand Photography for letting us repost their post to our blog

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