I recently had the pleasure of working with the wonderful photographer and cinematographer Asia Kepka. All that I have learned under her tutelage cannot be contained or described in a simple blog post. However, I have one important lesson from Asia that I would like to relay here: lighting makes or breaks a film. A great example of this is seen in “If I Fall Behind” by Rose Cousins. Asia filmed some of that in a recording studio which was rather dark. To compensate, she brought in lamps from her home and studio. The warm incandescent lights bring a wonderful warmth to the atmosphere in the film.
Examples of where you see this happen elsewhere is in real estate photos. If you have looked at homes for sale or rent online recently, you have probably seen ones that were dark and grainy (or dark, grainy, blurry and crooked – my favorite). I always feel bad for the homeowners in that case — imagine the feeling you would have to see your home cast in a less-than-flattering light (so to speak). Then you look at other homes which were clearly shot with ample light and proper photographic equipment (and the eye of a professional photographer). What a dramatic difference.
Do photos really make a difference in marketing a home?
Yes. The National Association of Realtors did a study of homes for sale and the number of photos that represented them. Homes with a higher number of photos sold with lower days on market (DOM) — translation: more photos means a home sells faster. It would be really interesting to try to study how the quality of the photos has an affect. Since that can be subjective, it would be harder to measure. But, I think that we can all assume that the nicer the photo, the more likely someone is to want to see or buy the home.
So, don’t scrimp on photos. It could mean all the difference in marketing your home, your product or yourself.