Last week, Michael Behrendt, Durham's Town Planner, and I discussed memorializing the entire Historic District of Durham. Should be interesting, but involved. It's a small district (see map), but includes some significant buildings and structures. I'll post some of the photos here.
This building, the old Grange Hall, is at the start of the district on Main Street closest to the downtown section. It was moved toward the sidewalk and completely renovated and added to. Pete Murphy did the work.
This starts the district going east on Main. The Grange is to the right of the green building. This whole section is scheduled for major redevelopment and improvement.
Just got a price improvement on one of the homes I shot for Loren Selig. http://bit.ly/19k8iUi 381 Beauty Hill Road, Barrington. It's a truly amazing property.
Last week I photographed another home for Lynda Cadieux-Ferland in Stratham. http://bit.ly/1hi28sT It was a little difficult to shoot since the furniture was already out, but I'm sure you'll get the picture. I love these rural settings!
This house is in Exeter, NH, near the Exeter Inn. Its owners are working very hard (and doing a marvelous job) to restore it to its former majesty. It will eventually be put on the market. When they get further along, I'll be able to post some other pictures. But for now, this is definitely an old house that is in need of a lot of work. For example, take a look at the detail of one of the fireplaces below. Making marble look nice after some serious neglect is in itself a tough job. I'll post more pics later.
I got a call the other day from someone who looked me up on the Real Estate Photographers Association of America and International (what an awkward name...) which I just joined. He wants me to do some photography on Sunday. But he talked about an architectural lens, which was new to me. I looked them up and found several, including a Nikon, which is my camera (and has been since the '60's!). I had told him that I didn't have one and wasn't familiar with them, so imagine my surprise when I found that there are many out there!
Well, they go from about $1,400 to $3,000. Not something I can justify in this business climate.
But what's more, Photoshop CS6 and other versions can do the same thing, at much less the cost.
What an architectural lens does is get rid of the slanting walls when you take a close shot of a tall building...like this:
Photoshop has some filters that will take care of this completely. You just have to work the sliders until you get the shot you want. Here's a first pass. You can see where some tweaking is needed.
The photo above I found on the web somewhere. I put it through the Photoshop filter called Lens Correction, used the custom setting so I could control the Vertical Perspective and Horizontal Perspective, and did a little with the Vignetting. If I had taken another 15 minutes, I could have made it perfect...but you get the idea. It's just a matter of tweaking the technology of Photoshop.
But anyway, I had to look up that camera lens and found that my client was correct, there are lenses to take care of this. You just have to remember to adjust for your camera, type of lens, and other variables.
So I officially present myself as an old dog who can still learn a thing or two!
It seems to me that if kitchens sell a home (and this can be debated), then when I come in to photograph, that kitchen ought to be near perfect. Yes, I know...putting away the blender, the toaster, the dish towels, the salt and pepper shakers can be a real pain. But remember your Fine Arts 101 class (assuming you had a course like that...)?
What is the eye drawn to in a picture? How does the eye move around the image? Where and what are the stopping points?
I'd say cabinets, sink and faucet, stove, placement of the big appliances...these are the things a potential buyer is looking at. And that cute cat and dog salt and pepper shaker set is just too distracting. So is the clock with the moving cat tail...so is the refrigerator full of magnets and doctor's appointment cards.
REALTORS® have to put on their most persuasive manner when it comes to prepping for the photo shoot. Sellers have to think about the results they want. Everybody wants this home to sell. So let's all take a little extra time and get ready for a very important sales tool: the online photographs.
I love that kitchen, too! And I want to see it, not the personality of the homeowner
No, this is not a guest room. It's a daily-used bedroom. Oh sure, you say, who lives that neatly? Well...probably no one. But this house is for sale and its owner did some beautiful staging. She's not about to let a bad first impression turn off any potential buyers. From the positioning of the bedspread to the knickknacks on the surfaces, everything is carefully presented so that nothing looks out of place, nothing can make a viewer hit the delete button. Really, you've only got a few seconds online, so it all has to count!
OK, I don't have a "bad" example because we try to fix them as we go room to room. But here is a truly ugly specimen. It was a rental property and the owner obviously had no idea what the apartments looked like. Needless to say, the Broker will not be using these photos!
I think you get the picture. Take that extra 1/2 hour with your client to make sure the place is House Beautiful perfect. It will add dollars to your sale!