Workshop Wednesday – Pool/Backyard

Workshop Wednesdays are a weekly segment where I provide a composition analysis of a real estate photograph. If you have a specific type of interior or exterior space that you would like to see in this segment, please get in touch.

This week’s image was captured during a daytime photo-shoot of a 5-bedroom two-level home. The purpose of the image is to show backyard of the home which features a pool and large outdoor entertainment area. The image was shot from the far rear corner of the pool looking back across the pool and house.

Three bracketed exposures (one stop apart) were captured as the day was quite overcast and the light intensity was already quite even across the entire frame including the undercover entrainment area outside the living room.


As the camera was positioned to face diagonally across the backyard from the rear corner, it created a visual showing the lines of the pool decking and pool edges converging inward in the direction of the outdoor entertainment area/house.

This helps tell the ‘story’ of the image to the viewer by encouraging them to start by looking at the pool (the primary feature of the composition) and then leading them down towards the outdoor entertainment area (the second most important feature).


When the rule of thirds is applied to the composition it shows that the primary feature of the image makes up a significant part of the image (one-third), and the remaining features (house, outdoor entertainment area, blue sky, and grassed area) share the remaining two-thirds of the composition.


The camera was raised high enough on the tripod to reveal the treetops in the distance (on the right-hand side) to add more greenery to the image which contrasts nicely with the blue sky and water.


The left-side of the image unfortunately comprises some of the pool cleaning equipment and pump. The frame was slightly cropped (to 19mm) to hide as much of this as possible without cropping out the wooden pool decking (on the bottom left corner) which is a valuable feature of the image.


The camera could have been rotated slightly more to the right to reveal the end of the backyard (the back fence running alongside the back of the pool). However, by not cropping the right border of the image on the fence it creates a mystery to how large the backyard is.

This can entice viewers to try to learn more about the property, by spending more time on the listing page or contacting the agent, essentially generating a new lead for them (which is the goal of your real estate photography).

Photograph Information

Camera: NIKON D750

Aperture (ƒ): 11

Focal Length (mm): 19

ISO: 250

Shutter Speed (s): 1/250s (3 Brackets)

Flash Fired: No

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