The 9 most important tips and tricks to take amazing professional photographs for your Airbnb listing
Do you have an awesome space and want your photo on Airbnb to reflect that? Do you know that presenting a property from the best perspective is key but you can’t afford a professional photographer? How are you going to capture all that your place has to offer?
If you want your image to be an example of visual storytelling then you can accomplish this by following the tips below. There are techniques you can utilize, but keep in mind that in photography, there are no solid rules, just guidelines to follow. So, find your style.
1. Choose the Right Time
It is crucial to find the right time for taking pictures. The best time for outside photography is the first and last hour of daylight. You get a more consistent diffused light entering the lens. You want to make sure you are making the most of the brightness unless you are aiming for a twilight photo-shoot. For the inside, examine the space thoroughly and find the best time.
2. Use a Flash
Using the flash is always tricky as it might bleach or flatten the shot but depending on the space, lack of natural light or the specific furniture, you can consider using the “always flash” feature. Take a few shots and see the difference.
Using a cell phone tripod removes small movements and stabilizes the camera. It allows you to take professional rock-steady pictures. This is important especially when the natural light is not strong enough. With a tripod, you can concentrate on the subjects and create a better composition.
4. Consider Daylight
Natural light is the photographers’ best friend, so open all the blinds or curtains and let the daylight fill the space. This will make your picture more professional, realistic and stand out on Airbnb. Although you want to use the brightness of the day as much as you can, you don’t want to take pictures when the sunlight is shining directly into the room. So, take advantage of cloudy but bright days and take your perfect shots.
5. Light Bulbs Off
Unless you want to showcase specific furniture, decoration or lighting fixtures, it’s best to keep the light bulbs off. It might sound contrary to the tip above, but by avoiding the artificial light, you will enhance the quality of the photo and don’t have to deal with white balance issues.
If you have a naturally dark space or you want to fill in the shadows, use reflectors or mirrors. With natural light, colors will appear fresh and clean and you will rarely need to adjust them after the shots are taken.
6. Prepare a Cell Phone for Photography
Even if you don’t have access to a camera, you can still take professional pictures with your cell phone. Cell phones give you a wide variety of options to choose from such as auto, sunshine, panorama, wide-angle, etc.
Always shoot from the mid-room height or a little higher than your waist-level to avoid having photos that seem you are looking down on most interior objects.
7. Choose the Right Angle
In order to capture the scale and the size of the area and create a more spacious and welcoming picture, choose a corner and start off by taking wide photos. Take several shots from different angles to show the interior design in various forms. Now, go to the other corner and repeat the same procedure to find the best photo for your listing on Airbnb.
Straight angles and detailed pictures
Taking straight angles -pointing forward toward a flat surface- creates more natural and harmonious results. It will also make it much easier to crop if you need it later in your work. On the other hand, for detailed pictures, you want a closer crop. So, depending on what you want to showcase, choose the right angle.
Focus on the corners
Instead of avoiding the corners, you can add more dimension and space to the photo by shooting into the corners. This will create a more spacious impression of the area and add depth to the photo.
Landscape and portrait
Always consider the landscape format. Portraits are usually used to focus on a person rather than space. Use portrait only if you want to showcase any specific person or object in your photos. But in most cases, landscape orientation shows the space in more detail and is the best option for professional pictures on Airbnb.
“No matter which angle or form you choose, you can capture a professional picture by keeping vertical things vertical.”
8. Photography of All Parts of the House
Make sure you are taking the shots from the same level and applying the same height to all the photos in one single section or interior. Otherwise, it will look like you are jumping up and down while taking the photos. Using a tripod will definitely make it easier to keep the same height and take professional photos.
When taking pictures of the different parts of the house, create a story by weaving the photos together. So the viewer will envision how to use the space and its features. For instance, if you have a dining room and then a corridor leading to the bedrooms, your series of pictures should tell the story of how you can get from the dining room to the bedrooms through the corridor.
9. Remember the Details
As it is always said, the devil is in the details. Taking professional photos of your listing requires patience and several shots from different angles. Here are the final details of taking the best picture on Airbnb:
Remove unnecessary items
It might sound like a basic tip but clean the kitchen, put the toilet lid down and remove the dishes, paper towel, shampoos and whatever that makes the photo messy and untidy.
Display all the equipment that will make a difference in your photos: Fireplace, BBQ, bookshelves, dishwasher, toys for kids, patio and whatever that can add value to the pictures should be included. The special amenities of your place will differentiate and highlight the uniqueness of your property on Airbnb.
Travelers pay attention to the area and neighborhood they are staying in, so take pictures outside to show where your property is located. Also highlight accessibility to shops, popular restaurants, exciting tourism attractions or even public transit.
Familiarize the viewer
Take several pictures from different views, select the best ones and remember that the more professional photos, the better your listing will stand out on Airbnb.
Using a free photo editor such as Photoshop Express, Pixlr, Picmonkey, or ipiccy will enhance the quality of your pictures. However, while you can fix the lack of lighting and remove unwanted objects or harsh shadows, always make sure your professional photos don’t look unrealistic or deceiving.
These tips will assist you to take professional pictures on Airbnb and avoid the mistakes a lot of new interior photographers do. Now, prepare the place, grab your phone and have fun.