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Tips for taking better photos of your home

By Amy Wright | Apr 13, 2021

Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and wondered how all these people have such amazing-looking homes? For real, most of these places look like something straight out of an interior design magazine.

We bet your home looks a bit more comfortable and well-loved — to put it nicely.

We’re going to share a secret with you, most of those people probably have homes just as loved as yours. The only difference is that they know how to photograph it a little better than you do.

Come along with us because we’re going to share the secrets to beautiful real estate photos with you right here! Whether you want to put your house up for sale or just want to amaze people with your magazine-worthy home, these tips will help you succeed!

Ditch the flash, use natural light

You’re planning on taking interior shots of your home, therefore you might think that it makes sense to use the flash. After all, you want that nice, bright style you see in those fancy interior design magazine photos. However, using flash is a great way to quickly destroy your photo, particularly if you don’t know how to use it properly. An on-camera flash will only illuminate the area directly in front of the camera, resulting in shadows on the sides and even glare off of shiny surfaces near the middle of the image.

Instead, use only natural and ambient light when taking photos of your home. Turn on the lights and open curtains up wide to get as much natural light in the room as possible.


Use a tripod

Even with the curtains open, you might be wondering how to get a bright photo without a flash. The secret is to use a slow shutter speed. When the camera shutter moves slowly, more light has time to enter the camera and hit the sensor.

But the problem with slowing down the camera is that you’ll generally introduce blur from camera shake. At slow enough speeds, just clicking the shutter button is enough to blur the image.

The trick is to use a tripod. Use the timer feature or set your camera up with a remote trigger so that you don’t even have to touch the camera to take the picture.

Put your camera in manual mode or aperture priority and choose a slow enough speed to brighten up a dark room easily.


Choose a wide-angle lens

A wide-angle lens will allow you to capture more of the room at one time, making it seem larger. It also tends to stretch out space in the photo, making it look like there is more space between objects and thus the room seems more spacious.

Be careful though, wide-angle lenses can also introduce distortion to the image, especially on the edges. Professional photographers will generally choose a wide-angle lens with a focal length between 16-24mm. This is wide enough to capture the whole room while only causing a bit of distortion on the edges. This distortion is easily removed in post-processing software such as Lightroom.

If you don’t have access to this technology, you can use the wide-angle setting on your smartphone. Zoom out as far as you can without seeing noticeable distortion.

Watch your angles

Tall people will especially run into this problem if they take photos while standing up. Though as a tall person you might not realize it, you’ll be photographing at a slightly downward angle, which will look odd in the photo.

Try this, take a photo of your living room where you have custom canvas prints or framed prints on the wall. If you take it standing straight up, you’ll probably notice that the edges of that beautiful wall art aren’t quite straight. The edges of doors and windows will also look out of whack.

The best way to take straight photos is to lower the camera. The height will vary a bit depending on the size of the room, but you’ll generally want to aim to have the camera about 40-50 inches off the floor.


Take photos one room at a time

Does it sound too exhausting to clean and stage your entire house for photos? You’re right, it will be! This is especially true if you have little ones running around behind you messing up your work.

To avoid this problem, focus on photographing one room at a time. Clean and style the bathroom and maybe the bedroom one day and do the living room another day. It will be far less overwhelming to do it this way.

Style your space

Take the time to put some thought into your home decor for each image. You may have some gorgeous framed art hanging in the living room that would actually look amazing for a styled shot of your bedroom.

Remember, you don’t always have to photograph each room as a whole. Instead, you can pick out interesting details to spotlight in a tighter shot.

For example, in the bedroom, you might photograph just one corner where you have your reading nook. Set up a bookshelf with your comfy chair and line up your favorite titles. Style the chair nicely with a patterned pillow and a throw over an ottoman. Hang your favorite piece of canvas art on the wall over the bookshelf to add the finishing touch to the image.


Have fun with it! You just might be surprised that with a little planning and styling, you can take magazine-worthy photos of your well-loved home!

Canvaspop can help!

Of course, bare walls in every shot won’t give you the put-together look you’re going for. You need some basic home decor to help with that.

Custom framed prints, canvas prints, collage prints, etc, are like the cherry on top of interior design. Without these, you won’t get the sophisticated look you’re going for. Turn your favorite photos into custom wall art today!

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