Birmingham AL Real Estate Photos

979 Cobble Creek - Birmingham AL Real Estate Photography by Tommy Daspit

A rather large amount of my real estate photography business does not come from agents. Instead, it comes from the homeowners themselves. Often they aren’t satisfied with the photos the agents take themselves or ones taken by a photographer that works more on volume (I take much longer to photograph a home than most real estate photographers). The homeowner recognizes the importance of great photos to attract potential buyers. The homeowner is the one with the greatest stake in selling the home. I’ve had more than one homeowner tell me that they could recognize my style. That they could tell which homes I’d photographed!

In the case of this beautiful home in Hoover the homeowners knew they wanted the house professionally photographed before they even hired an agent to list it. They found me online and we picked the perfect day and time for the sunlight to be just right. I could tell right away that this couple had taken a lot of pride in maintaining this home. No detail was left unattended to. They even went so far as to stage the kitchen, livingroom, and dining room to help the photos look even better. I will say that this was a first!

I love working with people who understand that it takes more than just a “nice camera” to get great images. They were patient with me as I lit each room and composed each shot. There were little details that take a little extra time for me but can make a big difference in the final image. For example, the homeowner told me how she was disappointed that the ferns by the front door had died. We’d just had a big cold snap and they didn’t make it. She lamented how brown and dead looking they were. So in the image of the front porch I used the magic of Photoshop to bring them back to life. It took me a few extra minutes at the computer but it was worth it. The photo looked much better and the client was thrilled! In fact here’s what they had to say:

Tommy:  The photos look FANTASTIC.....we absolutely love them. Nice touch up job on the ferns at the front door!  GREAT JOB!!” and “If these photos don't get us showings, I don't know what will.”

Take a look at the photos below and go here to get more information on this property, or contact the agent, Cindy Porter 205-755-7719.

click on thumbnail to view larger image

Rudulph Rents - Birmingham AL Real Estate Photographer by Tommy Daspit

I’ve photographed many homes for real estate agents and homeowners to help sell the property. This was the first time I’ve been hired to photograph a house for rent. Rudy Rudulph, owner of Rudulph Rents here in Birmingham gave me a call. Normally he photographs his listings himself. In this case the homeowner he was representing wanted it professionally photographed. It’s a very nice home and the photos needed to reflect that. So I was honored to be entrusted with that responsibility!

The truth of the matter is that whether you are selling a home or marketing it for rental, the photographs are what make people take notice. High quality images will make the listing stand out from the crowd. People flipping through listings on their phone or laptop make decisions about which one to look at deeper in milliseconds. A bad photo can give a bad feeling about the home even if it’s amazing in person. They may never give it that chance.

Earlier in the week I was photographing a home coming onto the market and talking to the homeowner (as I often do, I’m kind of an extrovert). They told me that they almost didn’t look at the home they ultimately purchased (the one they are now selling). The photos were awful. It was a real turn off and they really had no interest in the home. Fortunately for the seller, it was the only home then available in the area they wanted and in person it looked much better than the photos. They got a great deal on the home because it had been on the market so long that the price had been reduced. How many potential buyers never gave the house a chance because of the bad first impression the photos gave?

They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression. The photos of the home, whether for sale or rent, are what make that first impression. My job it to make sure it’s a good one!

Learn more about this property here.

click on thumbnail for larger image

view these photos as a video slideshow

Willow Homes - Birmingham, AL Architectural Photography by Tommy Daspit

I’ve gotten a little behind in blogging some of my recent projects. As some of you might know, my 18 month old daughter, Pippa, has been sick with high fevers for the past couple of weeks. This has put me a bit behind on everything but I’m working on getting back into the swing of things as best I can. I do want to thank everyone for all of the love and support we’ve been receiving lately! It’s been a tremendous help, I don’t know how we would have made it otherwise!

I’m really excited to show this project off. I’ve posted a few of the images in other places but this is the first time I’m putting them all together. Jason Hale of Willow Homes contacted me about photographing a couple of his recent projects. I’ve worked with him in the past and I’m always excited about working with him. Willow’s homes are beautiful and high quality. Their style is amazing and a true joy to photograph. 

The last home I photographed was a remodel of a 1950’s craftsman and was part of the Birmingham parade of homes. This one was a complete teardown and rebuild on a lot in Homewood. Jason wanted me to photograph the key point of this home as well as a couple of the kitchen and master bath for the home he did right next door. 

As soon as I drove up I knew this was going to be a good one. The design of the home, and the landscaping was just perfect. Going inside was even better! The homeowners were so very gracious in letting me take over the house. It takes time to craft images that truly showcase the builders vision and craftsmanship. It’s not something that can be done well in a couple of hours!

In addition to the standard daylight interior and exterior images, I was also able to create some pole arial shots and twilight exterior. For the pole arial images I use a modified painters pole that allows me to get the camera 16’ in the air for a higher perspective. I use a wifi connector to control and trigger the camera from below. This gives me the ability to get a high vantage point without having to sacrifice quality or run afoul of the FAA! The wifi system also allows me to trigger the camera remotely for the twilight images. I actually combined multiple photos to create the final images. I lit each room from the inside using a flash triggered by the same wifi remote system. Without it these images would be very difficult to pull off. This all takes time and skill to achieve a stunning look like no other!

Click on the thumbnails below to see the complete project. If you’re in the market for a remodel or whole home build I highly recommend Jason and the Willow Homes team! 

click on thumbnail to view larger image

See more of my Birmingham AL Architectural Photography portfolio.

2210 Wedgewood Rd - Vestavia Hills Real Estate Photography by Tommy Daspit

This was the first time I got to work with Jennifer Harris from Realty South here in Birmingham. We are both members of BNI (a business networking group) but different chapters. Her’s meets on Wednesday mornings and mine on Thursdays. One of the rules of BNI is that if you can’t make the meeting you need to get a substitute. Since I’m free on Wednesdays I often substitute at her group. As an aside, if you own a business or are a sales professional, you should join a BNI chapter. It has done wonders for my business.

Jennifer was listing the home of one of another member of her chapter, Bruce McMillan business coach. The home was beautiful but posed a special challenge. The entire back side of the home was floor to ceiling windows. The view was great and she wanted to show it off. The problem is when photographing that situation you run into something impossible for the camera to handle. If you get the exposure right for the inside the view out the windows goes pure white. Photographers call this being “blown out”. Get the exposure right to see the beautiful view and the inside will be really dark. The camera simply doesn’t have the ability to capture the full range of tones the way the human eye does. Sometimes this is a good thing. If the view outside the window isn’t very attractive then you might not want to draw attention to it. This was not the case here.

To deal with this dilemma many photographers turn to a technique called HDR. This stands for High Dynamic Range. Instead of one photos they typically take three. One is exposed for the outside, one for the inside, and one in-between. Then those three images are composted in Photoshop. If done right this technique can sometimes give good looking results. Often though, it produces weird and unnatural looking images. The colors can look garish and shadows that should be there aren’t. Overall it can make the viewer get the feeling that things were heavily Photoshopped or “filtered”

The technique I use is different. I take the time to light the interior so the exposure inside closely matches the outside. Sometimes this can be done with one light (a high powered flash unit) but often it requires two or more. Time and care must be taken to make sure the lights supplement the natural light. The image needs to represent the light that exists in the home. I will take this into account in deciding where to put the light and if I need to modify the light in anyway. This process takes longer. It’s harder to do than just shooting a three shot burst. For me though, I think the results speak for themselves. 

Take a look at the photos below and see what I mean. 

To learn more about this home see the full listing and contact Jennifer Harris at or 205-965-1129

click on thumbnail to view larger image

28 Spring St Birmingham AL Real Estate Photographer by Tommy Daspit

This is a great home in Mountain Brook (Crestline Village) that I photographed for Susie Denson of Realty South. It’s one of those homes where the view from the curb is a little misleading. It looks great, but you would think there isn’t much to it. One might think that it’s just a cozy little bungalow. However, once inside it would be forgiven if you thought you were in the TARDIS (for all you Dr Who fans out there). This house is bigger on the inside. Much bigger. This is a good illustration as to why my services can be so valuable. By creating images that are high quality and attention grabbing, people flipping through listings online are more likely to pause and take a deeper look. From there, it’s my job to compose photos that illustrate the size and feel of the home accurately. I don’t use super wide angle lenses that distort rooms, making them look larger than they actually are. Rather, I use composition to show how rooms are connected, how the space really feels, and convey the true nature of the home. It’s much easier to go in a just start banging away, randomly, with deceiving, stretched views. That’s why it takes me longer to photograph a home. I take time to analyze the light, the angles, and what features best showcase the home. My style isn’t for everyone. I get asked if I can shoot those super wide shots. I politely explain that doing so doesn’t help sell homes. Rather, it makes potential buyers feel tricked. That’s not a good way to build trust, and when buying a home, trust is very important! I was recently photographing a home and the owner asked if I used that technique. I told her no, and my reasoning. She was very relieved by this. She told me that she found a home online and fell in love. It was THE one. However, when she walked in the door it looked nothing like the photos online. The listing agent used super wide photos that made things appear bigger than they were. She turned around and walked out in tears. Not exactly a winning strategy. 

Take a look at my photos of this home below to see what I can do. Let me know what you think. Does this house seem tiny? Or do you get a feel for the true size that it actually has?

Interested in a great Mountain Brook home? Go here to see the full listing and tell Susie hello for me!

click on thumbnail to view larger image

Learn more about my Birmingham AL Real Estate Photography

Susie Denson - Realty South 205-870-5420