Simon Burt, of Simon Burt Photography, explains the art of interior photography
There’s a right way and a wrong way to do everything. Or is there? Sometimes if you are giving your client what they want, who’s to say that you should follow rules and if there are rules, why shouldn’t they be broken?
I think this applies to most areas of photography. If we all followed all the ‘rules’ rigidly, all our pictures would be too similar.
However, with interior photography for instance, there are some rules and methods which I believe should be observed. For instance most of my interior images are shot using specialist lenses which help me keep uprights upright and deliver the high quality images that my clients expect of me.
These lenses have two movements, one to change the focal plane. This is called ‘tilt’ and is sometimes used to simulate a miniature scene or to increase the depth of field across a picture. The movement I use most is ‘shift’. This allows movement of the lens parallel to the image plane and helps with producing images of buildings and rooms with upright lines.
Taking a picture of a building or room with a wide angle lens would normally result in the upright lines converging.
Architects and builders would rather see their creations as they are and not looking like they’re falling over!
A good sturdy tripod is a must, in fact I wouldn’t even contemplate shooting an interior job without one. I’m lucky to have bought a very sturdy piece of kit about 20 years ago that is still more than up to the job. Quite often, an interior photograph will be made up of more than one exposure. If there is a big difference in light levels across a scene I will shoot to expose for the different levels and layer the images together in post production. Having said that, I aim to light rooms in a way that would lead the viewer to assume that they are not lit at all. Making the artificial light appear to come from the same direction as any natural light source is one trick.
Styling is also an important aspect to consider. Most of the clients I work for regularly do their own ‘faffing’ but I also work with two Cornwall based interior designers on the more considered projects. The placement of objects that are relevant to a space can transform the look of a room, add a splash of colour and when done well, elevate the value of the image to both my client and their consumer.
I think it’s sometimes good to make a room in a holiday cottage looked ‘lived in’ as it feels more welcoming. As I am also a consumer, I like to empathise with what my clients need overall and am always keen to work to a clear brief.
If you have a hotel, restaurant, B&B, holiday let or if you’re planning to sell your home, good imagery is very important contribution towards bookings or a sale. Feedback from existing clients has proven this time and again!
We are seeing some glimmers of sunshine which is a promising sign that spring will soon be here. I feel incredibly popular during blue skies and sunshine but rest assured, not all of the properties that you see on my website were shot on sunny days. I can bring the sunshine with me (to some extent!).
I am flattered to be called to work for a range of clients such as the iconic Headland Hotel, Latitude 50, Richardson Hotel Group, Treworgey Cottages, the award winning Park Dean Holiday Parks and many more both large and small.
Robert Wilson, Operations Director, Captains Club Hotel, commented: “After instructing a marketing agency to rebrand the Captains Club Hotel and Spa, complete with new logo and a brand new website, Simon Burt Photography was invited to spend 2 days doing architectural, food and lifestyle shots for the new website.
“From start to finish Simon was a joy and an inspiration to work with, covering all requirements in a short space of time. I would not hesitate to recommend him for any work of a similar nature.”
As part of a recent market research campaign, this is what some of my clients had to say about me … Simon ‘adds value, listens, is vastly experienced, is trusted, exceeds expectations, collaborates, is quick and effective and always delivers’.
“We think of Simon as part of the family.” Fifteen Cornwall
If you have decided to enhance your photography this year and feel that you would benefit from my personal experience or expertise, please give my customer service team a call on 01872 321221 who will book you in for a complimentary, informal chat with yours truly. Together, we can discuss options for you and your business. Looking forward to hearing from you.