Last November my wife and I bought a house. After years of watching the market go insane with mediocre homes selling for $350,000 and up, we've been patiently waiting for prices to come back down to earth.
Last spring we realized that we might actually be able to afford something, and began a house search that took us all of the summer and fall. But finally we found a wonderful house in the woods.
I've wanted to take some nice images of the house since we moved in, but just haven't had the time. This assignment was a good opportunity to do that.
However, it really didn't turn out quite the way I had originally thought. For the assignment, I had to meet a very high standard of image quality, such as you would find in Home and Garden or Architectural Digest. Well, we really don't have that kind of house, so instead of sweeping images showing of the house's interior, I focused on a more intimate view of the living room that didn't require buying all new furniture, dozens of pillows (we did buy four), and massive cleaning and rearranging.
However, we did end up rearranging the living room furniture for the shoot, since we needed to let more light into the space.
The shoot ended up taking two days - one for the set up,checking the lighting throughout the day, buying pillows and flowers, cleaning, hiding the TV, etc., and another for the shoot itself. I had flashes and reflectors all over the place.
In the end, the images came out fine, but don't really show off our living space, but that's okay.
For the most part, these images use natural lighting. However, for the first and last photos, I added some light to fill in some of the darker shadows. I set up two boom stands by the entryway and hallway and draped white sheets from them. This pretty much blocked the hallway, but it allowed me to create a very large white light source.
Behind the sheets, I set up two strobes, one bounced off a 48" umbrella and through the sheet, and the other shot through a softbox and then bounced off the wall and ceiling.
These lights added a very soft fill that kept the shadows from being too dark and added a sense of warmth to the images.