Mama always told us that it’s what’s on the inside that matters most – and this saying is especially true when branding your business. You may not have thought of this at first, but when it comes to designing your online space, nothing can make your clients feel more comfortable than including shots of your physical storefront. Whether you’ve got a beautiful boutique, cool restaurant, cozy bed & breakfast or a swanky law firm – a few photos of the inside of your space can be just what you need on your new website to align your business’s branding across the board.
Whether you’re interested in lifestyle photography, real estate imagery, or something in between, knowing how to capture great photos of interiors is a skill all beginners should master. Here are 9 quick tips that’ll help up your interior photography game. Depending on the mood you’re going for, the client brief, and your own stylistic preferences, you’ll want to adjust these tips accordingly. That said, these 9 guidelines offer a great place to start.
1. Shoot from waist level
Shooting from a standing position will have you looking down on most interior scenes, especially if you’re emphasizing furniture and decor. Shoot from waist level, and use a tripod to make sure you get rock-steady shots from the perfect perspective.
2. Eliminate blurring
Even if you have the steady hands of a surgeon, there’s no reason to risk blurry images. Use a tripod to keep your indoor shots looking sharp. As an extra stabilizing measure, use your camera timer to make sure the shot is untainted by any movement that your excited fingers may have caused.
3. Choose your subject and compose accordingly
Many (if not most) interior shoots will feature decor over people, so pick a subject and then compose your shot accordingly. Don’t be afraid to move things around, remove distracting elements, and add (appropriate) touches like books, plants, and/or blankets.
4. Choose the right perspective
Before you start snapping your business’s space, take a second and decide what impression you’d like to give your viewers. Do you want to give them a warm welcome by shooting your office’s entrance? Or maybe your impressive space calls for a panoramic point of view? Once you’ve figured out what impression you’re looking to make, you’ll have an easier time deciding where to physically place your camera in order to achieve your goal.
5. Use a wide-angle lens for most shots, and a normal lens for details
This one depends a lot on the client brief or specific shot you’re taking, but most interior shots will be captured with a wide-angle lens (24mm equivalent-ish or wider). The exception is detail shots, which require a closer crop and will be better served by, say, a 50mm equivalent. Lenses ranging from 16mm to 24mm will give you an optimal wide shot of the interior. Wider than that and you risk perspective distortion.
These days, even most cellphone cameras come with a panorama stitch option. With a little practice and a careful eye, you can create a cool wide-view of your entire space.
Feeling fancy? Get a birds eye view of your space by using a drone.
6. Use natural light, correct lighting
Let’s talk lighting. When shooting interior spaces, finding the right light for your purpose can be a little tricky. As with many things in photography, the time of day you take your pics effects how your photos turn out. Attempting to set a more romantic or serious mood? Schedule your shoot for the evening. On the contrary, if you’re looking to show off the high-energy of your pilates studio, you’ll want to utilize natural light and open those window blinds for a morning shoot.
As a rule of thumb, your goal is to balance the light in your space so that you avoid both over-lit and under-lit spots in your shot. Sometimes all it takes is some extra lamp lighting and a pull of the shades to achieve the mood you’re after.
7. Shoot with a smaller (f/5.6-f/11) aperture to keep everything in focus
Shooting wide open and getting that bokehlicious look is all good and well, but if your goal is to show off a whole room, you’ll want to keep the whole room in focus. Stop down unless you’re shooting detail shots where you want to isolate a smaller subject.
8. Set up your space
Didn’t your mother ever tell you to clean your room?! Whatever space you’re shooting, take the time to tidy up to give your photos a more manicured and editorial look. Don’t be afraid to bring some accessories to your indoor shoot to create a certain vibe. Sometimes all it takes is a stack of magazines on a coffee table or a fancy laptop on the desk to create the look you’re after. In other cases, you might want to rearrange furniture or remove them all together in order to highlight or conceal certain parts of the room.
9. Be versatile
Interior photography considerations can vary a great deal depending on the size of the space, the items located in it and the purpose of your shoot. Whether you’re in real estate, furniture design, or have a stylish shop, keep in mind what parts of your interior you want to show off. The most important part of shooting your space? Have fun! Include your staff and any other quirks that make your business unique.
Whether it’s your sports studio’s wall of champions, the fresh produce in your restaurant, or the decore in your stylish shop, keep in mind what parts of your interior you want to show off. The most important part of shooting your space? Have fun! Include your staff and any other quirks that make your business unique.
And that’s it. The tips aren’t ground-breaking, but they’ll definitely keep beginners from making some common mistakes, and they can help make interior snapshots look a lot more polished.
Petapixel / Wix / Elle
Please check some professional interior shots below: