Meet the Photographers

News at Dafydd Hardy | 11/07/2014

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. But when it comes to selling your property, a good photo can be worth many thousands of pounds. 

Dafydd Hardy employs three specialist photographers, who are all equipped with high-quality digital SLR cameras. Their job is to take first class photos of our properties, meaning that our vendors can avoid many of the issues that affect customers of estate agents who rely on point-and-shoot cameras, don't frame their shots properly, or in some cases even ask vendors to provide their own photos.

We typically aim to provide ten great quality photos of each property. But what makes a 'great' photo? We asked our photographers Patrick, Andrew and Claire for their top tips, and for their favourite properties currently on the market with Dafydd Hardy.

Patrick Higgins

Top tips

We feel we can take vendors' property photographs to a more satisfactory level, which boils down to a number of factors:

  • Having the technical know-how, i.e. a good understanding of the camera and how to get the best from the equipment (not relying on the automatic settings as the camera often gets it wrong - so you need to take control)
  • A more measured approach to the type of house, its setting and whether it has worthwhile features or views etc. that cry out for a little extra effort
  • Adding a creative touch/flair – thinking a little bit before taking the shot, a more considered approach to find the best composition, angle and so on.

Sometimes it’s desirable to incorporate the view as seen through a window. Not always achievable, but can work wonders! 

How about turning the camera on its side (portrait mode) for those hallways or unusual rooms? They usually don’t work on the internet, but boy they come into their own when creating glossy brochures! 

You can often surprise the vendor by taking a main photo of their property from an angle or perspective that they haven’t thought about. This might be achieved by simply standing in a slightly elevated position, putting the camera on a pole to overcome hedges etc, or even finding a vantage point that might be some distance from the property, showing it off in a different light, so to speak, and in context with its immediate surroundings. 

Most people see the benefit in editing photos these days (this is actually something which photographers have been doing for decades, if not longer) but when it comes to property, we have to render photographs accurately and without distorting the facts. Therefore we ensure our photos are bright, straight, well-exposed and ultimately appealing to all concerned. Of course, it goes without saying that an untidy house can have the effect of turning people away! 

As with most things in life, rules are there for a purpose and serve us all well. Certain rules come in very handy from a photographic point of view too. However, thinking outside the box can often lead to a few pleasing surprises. A combination of these factors will hopefully result in ultimately better photos, ones which capture the vendor's attention. Nine times out of ten the vendor will ultimately recommend our services to others.

Favourite property

I enjoyed photographing 17 West End Parade, Pwllheli.

This is a Victorian seaside residence and as such has great views to start with, but that was just a consequence. You see, I like Victorian/Georgian houses, usually because of the symmetrical and spacious rooms and the appeal of deliberate period features – in this case, the property was being totally renovated, however all essential features where left in-situ which was good news!

I was disappointed initially because internal work was still ongoing; but I soon discovered the best bits – from my point of view. Turns out the vendor only wants to begin marketing when all the work is complete which will mean a second visit and a fresh set of photographs. It's a hard life!

What struck me were the empty rooms with bay windows, exposed wood floors (rough and ready) and the fireplaces. It was minimalism that appealed to me, essentially creating shapes, converging lines etc. which is great from a compositional point of view. Someone with a creative eye could really return this house to its former glory with a splash of period furniture (not too much), sand and varnish the floors, a green plant (on the floor, of course), yet keeping the brilliant white walls (a picture or mirror above the fireplace is OK though). Think of the album cover to ‘Definitely Maybe’ by Oasis and you’ll know what I mean.

Claire Maines

Top tips

Taking time to walk around the house and garden, getting a feel of the property before taking the camera out, often results in better photos than if you'd walked in and started snapping away immediately. 

I also like to make sure vendors are aware of decluttering, and remind them to remove any personal items or photographs that they may wish to keep private when the photo is uploaded onto our website.