Weather is a royal pain. It varies the light level you have to play with, it changes without warning and it can dramatically affect the visual appeal of your shots.
The sun is shining, the birds are singing, what could be a more perfect day for a spot of property photography? Er actually one with a bit less sun. Why? Bright sunlight is not photogenic.
Highlights and dark shadows can cause extreme contrast in your shots. Not cool. So what you need to do is take three different versions of the same shot, then choose the best one. Try each of these:
- Focus on the property or garden, just focus and click.
- Focus on a dark area then adjust your aim back to the house or garden to take the shot.
- Focus on the sky then adjust your aim back to the house or garden and take the shot.
Which one looks the best? That’s the one you go forth and prosper with.
It’s usually the shot focused on the house or garden that works best, though it will still look pretty rubbish. It’s okay though because you can use Photoshop later to rescue the shot by lifting dark shadows, adding a blue sky back in – seems weird I know, but it’s how it’s done.
If the sun has tried its best to ruin your shot, the combo of Photoshop and Lightroom will give it their best shot to save it. It won’t be 100% perfect but it will be be a million times better than the image straight off the memory card.
Rain and grey skies
Grey skies won’t just make for a miserable rainy experience taking the damn photos, they’ll lower the vibrancy and impact of them too. Take the external shots as soon as you arrive at the property – the weather could take a turn for the worse. If you’re lucky and the sun does come out, you can always take the shots again.
Like with sunlight, try a few different focal points, but the best shot is usually the one where the main focus is on the house or garden. On a grey day, the image is guaranteed to look dull and dreary. To fix this, just give it a run through Lightroom to brighten up those pixels. The boost to the wow factor will be off the charts.
Snowy skies do nothing for your pics either, much like grey ones. Enter Photoshop. Additionally, a big patch of tarmac within a blanket of snow (after a car has been removed from the driveway for example) does not paint a pretty picture. Cue Photoshop.
You can’t control the weather, sadly, and stop the snow from falling. But you can remove settled snow from an image. Photoshop. Turn a white, snowy sky into a bright, baby blue one using post-production. Photoshop forever.
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