Lighting For Real Estate Photography Updated Again


Latest installment of “Le Monde Réel” went live this week — check it out at!

Honestly, this was the one that I came very close to dropping from the series, because it just looked too damn hard. There’s no way that this shot doesn’t challenge even the most advanced lighting technician, but Sinead and I worked through it and came up with enough ideas to at least get something done. Lots of good stuff inside….if you’re a subscriber, let me know what you think of this one!

2 responses to “Lighting For Real Estate Photography Updated Again

  1. Tim Schultz

    Scott, I really enjoy these videos! I have learned a bunch.

    In the video with box beams you said something about having to break out the “silks”. It was in the tail end of a discussion about how to light the foreground when you don’t have enough real estate to set up a light. I thought I saw a picture of a silk set up in one of your blog posts about a cherry kitchen. I was hoping to see that kitchen again.

    Can you elaborate on “silks”? How would the light from a “silk” differ in quality from a large umbrella. Presumably the silk would be a flat facet whereas umbrella is parabolic in shape. Would these two different shapes make a difference in how the light is projected? Does the placement of light relative to the “silk” have any impact? Could you illuminate a “silk” with a speedlite? Maybe you could put the speedlight into a kitchen cabinet and use the cabinet doors to frame the silk?

    • Tim, a silk is just a large piece of diffusion material, like a sheer curtain but a bit more opaque. You fire lights through it (often it’s an umbrella[s] into a silk) to get a really large diffuse light source. Not going to happen in a small cramped space, but really useful when you’ve got elbow room to operate in. It takes a few watt-seconds to do it, so speedlights are not going to cut it unless you’re working close and it’s a small target.