We’ve all experienced it, you see some great images on realestate.com.au for a property and make time in the middle of your day for the 15-30 minute viewing window, only to find that it is not as well maintained, as spacious or stylish as the images would have you believe.
“Wait.. is this even the same house?” It’s an awful feeling when you come to realise you’ve been tricked, and the property is simply not fit for your needs. Sure, you can rely on a floor plan to give you a more accurate perspective on things and if you were really savvy, you could check the street view, courtesy of Google maps. Google maps however can be outdated and how many of us can truly appreciate what a 4m x 3m room actually feels like with a king-size bed and a wardrobe inside?
The pictured photographs show a house in South Sydney as it was presented by the agent vs a Google Street View screenshot.
I’ve often been asked to Photoshop in a blue sky on an otherwise gloomy day (having worked as a real estate photographer in the UK for several years it almost became a staple of the job!) However, according to the agents behind the sale, no image manipulation has been applied.
“..it would appear from our own investigations that the photos have not been photoshopped and are instead simply taken from an angle from which the house obscures the water tank,”
Real estate Photography isn’t the only area that such “trickery” manifests itself. Fashion and Food Photography have been putting out unrealistic images for decades. Heck, I’m lucky if my Big-mac burger lid is still on the burger when I open the box, let alone look anything like the carefully staged, idealized version you see on the menu-board.
Photo Credit: Zach Weiler
Having transitioned in to Portrait photography some years ago and specialising in Professional Headshots, I’m often asked before a headshot session if I can Photoshop the images. It baffles me sometimes as a good photographer will only need to make some minimal adjustments, having already taken the time to understand your face, best angles and most complimentary lighting. Some people still don’t understand that a good headshot isn’t about making you look the best you ever have. Naturally it should be flattering, but it should communicate so much more than that: along with some ‘perceived’ flaws and imperfections, it should show people what makes you different from everyone else and what makes you ‘you’.
Photo Credit: Hero Shot Photography
If your Real Estate photography, corporate imagery or Headshot photography goal is enable you to meet up with new clients, build trust and enter in to a trusting business relationship, I would urge you to consider how an unrealistic photograph will likely damage your credibility whilst portraying dishonesty right from the get-go.
What are your thoughts? Has photo-trickery become an accepted part of our day to day lives?
Sammer Affridi is a Sydney Real Estate and Portrait Photographer and the founder of Hero Shot Photography | Corporate Headshots and Video in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.