Between cloudy skies, cold weather, dirty snow, and sometimes muddy conditions, shooting great real estate photographs during the winter can seem like a daunting task. But with these helpful tips from industry experts, you’ll soon be saying, “bring on the snow!” We asked two of VHT Studios’ top photographers about their experiences with winter shoots and what techniques they typically use to combat the challenges that sometimes arise during winter months.
So who are these top photographers you ask?
Kristen Jossart is a Seattle, WA native with over 20 years of photography experience. Jake Root has been passionate about photography since he was 11 and has spent his entire life in the northwest region of the United States capturing great shots every chance he gets. He also currently resides in the state of Washington. Both photographers offer years of professional experience in the real estate photography industry.
Here are 6 essential tips to make your listings stand out this winter:
- Embrace the snow. Snow can be a great touch to an exterior shot. However, it’s important to make sure the snow in the photograph looks fresh and clean. You don’t want to have muddy and discolored snow distracting from the rest of the photograph. If you can’t adjust the snow physically on the shoot, talk to the photographer about digital enhancement options. Kristen Jossart says, “VHT Studios makes it easier to shoot in the winter because of our post-production abilities.”
- Find the best lighting. It’s important to figure out the part of the day that will offer the best lighting for each particular home and area you’re shooting in. Make sure the photographer adjusts the light balance to compensate for those particular conditions. Jake Root states,“My favorite time to shoot in the winter is about a half hour before sunset”. He also states, “If I’m feeling ambitious I may try to shoot early at sunrise, which honestly is always the best light in the Northwest.” Make sure you and the photographer arrive plenty early so you can both be ready to capture the perfect moment when the lighting is just right.
- Be careful shooting holiday lights. It can be fun to shoot festive holiday photographs with a home decorated in Christmas lights. However, it can be difficult to capture the decorative lights properly in a photograph. If you have to shoot with lights ablaze, for the best results, Root says to use a tripod and shoot with longer exposure times.
- Do multiple exposures. If it’s a snowy day, it’s important for the photographer to do multiple exposures in order to compensate for the severe contrast and shadows that the snow creates. If you’re working with VHT Studios, make sure you choose premium photographs so you get the exposures you need.
- Find the right contrast. Another challenge when shooting photography in the winter (with snow) is finding the right contrast between a gray cloudy sky and a snowy yard. They tend to blend together. Jake Root says a black and white photo can sometimes be a great way to show more contrast between the home, the sky, and the snowy ground.
- Stick with the season. One final tip is to keep the main photograph for the listing with the current season. If it’s winter, make sure the main photograph for the listing isn’t from the fall or interested buyers may think the home has been on the market for a long time.
Now that you’ve read these insightful tips, we hope you’ll try new ways to capture winter shots in the best light. Winter can truly be a beautiful time of year for real estate photography. VHT Studios works with professional photographers all over the country who are extremely skilled at finding the perfect way to capture the best possible shot. If you’re in search of a great winter real estate photo and want to try a pro, give a VHT photographer a try.