I decided I need to stop being so lazy with my photos and start making some extra effort. So tonight I dragged out the tripod, played with the camera settings and employed a trick I learned from someone who photographs houses for real estate advertising. The result? See for yourself.
If you want to know how to make your house exterior look warm and inviting (and probably as attractive as it's ever going to get), listen up:
Before the sun is due to set, you need to get yourself organised. Turn off the auto flash on your camera and mount it on a tripod - you're going to need quite long exposures, so hand-holding won't work. Unless you want blurry pics, resulting from camera shake.
Turn on all the exterior lights and also all interior lights in rooms with windows that overlook the front yard.
Wander out the front and find the best vantage point. You might need to stand on the road, or the opposite footpath - that will largely depend on the focal length of your camera lens, and how wide your house is. Watch out for nature strip trees, power poles and the like, which might block your view - you may need to position yourself off to one side to avoid them.
Now be prepared to take lots of photos. Every few minutes, get some shots, perhaps from different angles. Keep taking photos until it's getting quite dark. Amongst that lot, you should end up with a few that have the wow factor....
These are mine, taken over about a 45-minute period, starting around 5:20pm. I used the same camera settings, and all the same lights were on throughout. The only thing that changed was the amount of daylight:
I was more than happy with the last set, and chose my blog header from amongst them.
Obviously, you also need to make sure the garden is tidy, move cars out of the driveway and away from the front of your house and so on. And if you can see in the windows, then you'll need to tidy up indoors too.
There you go - it's easy, when you know how.