How to Photograph Bedrooms: Real Estate Photography Tips

Unlock the basics of real estate photography, diving into the art of capturing bedrooms. Learn how to photograph bedrooms with practical tips for beginners.

Introduction: How to Photograph Bedrooms

Enter the world of real estate photography with essential tips for beginners, focusing on the simplicity and art of capturing captivating bedroom shots.

Bedrooms are one of the simplest rooms to photograph inside a home as they present very few challenges compared to bathrooms, kitchens, and living rooms. Typically, bedrooms exhibit a predominantly cuboid shape in their design, with at least one window and very little furniture, apart from the bed and side tables.

Bedrooms are typically captured using one of three compositions; however, it depends on the size of the room and placement of windows.

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The bedroom was photographed from the doorway to highlight the windows.

You should try to have three walls visible in each composition and avoid cutting off windows or the doorways to ensuites or walk-in robes. Important elements of a bedroom to consider in your composition include lighting, color scheme, décor, and positioning of the bed and other furniture.

Potential buyers or renters want to gain an understanding of the layout, true size, and envision how well their furnishings will relate to the space.

Setup and Positioning

Two full walls should be included in most compositions (if possible), and the third wall is only partially shown as a ‘border’ to give the viewer an idea of the size of the room. If the bedroom has a cupboard, ensuite, or WIR (walk-in robe), you should try to include these entrances in the shot to highlight to the viewer that the bedroom has these features.

real estate photography tips for beginners
The cupboard door borders the left hand side of the frame in this bedroom image.

If the home has several rooms, not all cupboards need to be visible in each bedroom photo, and you can afford to include more creative angles.  

how to photograph bedrooms

Camera height should be approximately 1.1-1.3m from the ground. If the bed is quite high off the ground, you can afford to lift your camera height slightly to avoid the bed filling too much of the frame.

You should be shooting your flash directly into the ceiling above you during each bracketed exposure. It allows the light to bounce off the ceiling or walls and eliminates many of the shadows around the furniture, making the colors within the frame look crisp and natural.

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The average bedroom requires three to five bracketed exposures to complete the dynamic range of the image; however, this depends on the size of the room, and the size and brightness of the windows. You need to check the darkest and lightest exposures in your set of bracketed shots to ensure you have collected a wide enough set of exposures. 

Challenges and Tips

Windows can sometimes be tricky, as the reflection of your flash can sometimes be seen depending on the window’s position. You can solve this issue by also collecting a series of bracketed shots without firing the flash. This allows your editor to keep the details of the subject that are blown out by the flash in the window.

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Study the following examples to gain an understanding of the recommended compositions and settings when photographing bedrooms. 

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  • The camera was set up on the opposite wall to the window, positioned slightly to the left side with the bed running parallel to the top and bottom of the window.
  • Setting up slightly to the left showed the desk without having to turn the camera to the right, and losing the level horizontal lines in the image.
  • A 17mm focal length crops the image at the edge of the pillows (and artwork) and shows a hint of the cupboard (on the right), without the cupboard taking up too much of the frame.
  • The telescope was positioned to face upwards towards the open sky at an angle close to the green metal façade outside the patio door.
  • Five bracketed exposures captured the dynamic range of the bedroom between the foreground and the view outside the window in the background. 
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  • The camera was set up just in front of the doorway to highlight the size of the room and show a clear path to the large sliding glass doors and patio.
  • Including the chest of drawers on the right-hand side of the frame helps indicate the true size of the room. I have only included two visible walls in the composition due to the size of the room and the position of furniture. 
  • The camera height was increased by 20cm (using the center column) to raise the camera slightly over the chest of drawers to show the plant and wooden surface. 
  • Six exposures were captured to cover the dynamic range, and to capture an extra under-exposed bracket to properly expose the bright sunlight on the wall in the patio area.

Remember to highlight the personality, lighting, and unique elements of each bedroom, turning ordinary shots into captivating snapshots that resonate with potential buyers or renters. Explore, experiment, and enjoy the process of refining your skills in the photographing bedrooms.

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