What Is HDR photography?

HDR stands for High Dynamic Range. Simply put, this is when your account for the bright spots all the way to the shadows and you balance them out in one image. In other words, one image evaluates a wide range of lighting all at once.
Often this is done by some form of blending multiple exposures.
The reason that HDR methods can make a big difference is that it makes an image look closer to what our human eye sees. Since a camera doesn’t evaluate and compensate for light the same way that our eyes do, though, we need to create the look to match.

Why Use HDR for Real Estate Photography?

The main reason for using HDR was mentioned above – so that it looks closer to the way that our human eye sees things.
As far as different genres of photography are concerned, though, HDR methods are most often used to balance interior spaces with exterior views.
This applies to real estate photography, interior photography, and exterior architectural photography.

Shooting for HDR

Working with HDR methods actually begins when you shoot, not just when editing. If you know that you’ll be shooting a subject or location that will need HDR to balance out bright and dark areas, then you’ll definitely need multiple exposures that you can later blend.
This means you’ll want to take one shot that is going to act as your base for the photo, and then at least one that is darker to capture your bright areas at the desired exposure, and then at least one that is brighter to capture the darker areas at the desired exposure.
Your base exposure is the one that you’ll apply your lighting techniques to, should you bring in artificial lighting of any kind. I would recommend doing your exposures in one stop increments (-2, -1, +1, +2).
Especially when you first start experimenting with HDR methods, you’ll want to take several shots in either direction so that you have plenty to pick from when it comes time to layer.
Remember that one of the great benefits of digital photography is being able to shoot endlessly and experiment at no extra cost!

This is a normally exposed shot. This shot could have been a little brighter, but we just need to be about to see enough interior details.

Finally, and overexposed shot, with +1 to +3 stops. This image always needs to be super bright, so that we can blend all the shadowed details into the final output image.

Our editors will then combine the photos, to create a single shot that looks like this:

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