Skip to content

Top 5 Reasons Exposure Bracketing is important in photography

Exposure Bracketing HDR in Santa Rosa, CA

If you’re like most agents, you are probably wondering, what is exposure bracketing, and why it is important in real estate photography. Have you ever taken a photo of your listing, only to realize that it looks washed out, or too dark?

You’re not alone! It’s hard to get the perfect exposure when shooting real estate photos. You want to show off the best features of your listing, but you also want to make sure that the light is warm and inviting.

Exposure bracketing is a technique that allows real estate photographers to capture a series of images, each with a different exposure. The human eye can adjust to light levels and see brighter or darker tones as needed. Exposure bracketing mimics that ability.

Exposure bracketing is a photography technique where multiple shots of the same scene are taken at different exposure settings. Typically, a series of three shots are taken: one at the camera’s metered exposure, one underexposed, and one overexposed. This technique helps photographers ensure they capture the scene with the optimal exposure, especially in situations where the lighting conditions are challenging or uncertain.

Exposure bracketing is particularly useful in high contrast scenes where there are both bright highlights and dark shadows. By taking multiple shots at different exposures, photographers can later choose the best-exposed image or merge them together using software techniques like HDR (High Dynamic Range) to create a final image with balanced exposure throughout.

In other words, you can shoot one image that is exposed for the indoor light temperature, and another image that is exposed for the outside light temperature at the same time. Then you blend them together to create an image that looks like what your eyes would see if looking at the property in person.

Exposure bracketing is particularly useful in real estate photography for several reasons:

  1. High Dynamic Range (HDR) Imaging: Real estate interiors often have a wide range of brightness levels, from bright windows to shadowy corners. By bracketing exposures and merging them into an HDR image, photographers can capture details in both the brightest and darkest areas of the scene, resulting in a well-exposed photograph that showcases the entire space.
  2. Balanced Lighting: Many real estate properties have mixed lighting conditions, such as natural light from windows and artificial light sources indoors. Exposure bracketing allows photographers to ensure that both types of lighting are balanced and properly exposed in the final image, avoiding overexposed windows or overly dark interiors.
  3. Enhanced Details: By capturing multiple exposures, photographers can bring out finer details in the property, such as textures in woodwork or architectural features, which might otherwise be lost in shadows or blown out in highlights.
  4. Professional Presentation: Real estate photography is often used for marketing purposes, where high-quality images can make a significant difference in attracting potential buyers or renters. Using exposure bracketing and HDR techniques helps photographers produce professional-grade images that showcase the property in its best light.
  5. Time Efficiency: While it may seem time-consuming to capture multiple exposures of the same scene, exposure bracketing can actually save time in post-processing. Rather than spending extra time adjusting exposure settings for each shot, photographers can quickly capture a bracketed series and merge them later using HDR software.

At Annadel Designs, we hand blend all of our photos to give you the best, most natural-looking result. The example on the left uses HDR hand blending to combine several photos into one. This modern home is located in Santa Rosa, California, in the beautiful wine country of Sonoma County.

Additional information about Exposure Bracketing can be found here.