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Globalized Photo Processing?

Spotlight on Real Estate Photography

The Entrepreneurial Spirit

As small business owners we celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit. We love that our business allows us to do what we love for people in our own community. We've purposely chosen a business model which puts us in close proximity to our clients.

Our clients have our personal phone numbers and email addresses for communication. They don't fill in an online form or schedule their appointments in an app. They talk to us about scheduling, special requests and problem-solving. (If you happen to like online scheduling and payment, we have that, too.)

When our clients schedule an appointment they know Bill will be their photographer. They know he has the equipment he'll need, he'll be dressed professionally and he'll treat their clients like the treasures they are. They know his eye and technique will capture the images they need to sell their listings.

The Personal Touch Continues

Our personalized service continues to the processing and delivery of your images. Did you realize many real estate photographers are outsourcing their processing? When they walk out of your listing, they upload the images to an online site and that's the end of it. You'll get your photos back in a format that seems to be from them, but is it? Perhaps they've been sent from India, China or some other locale. We get sales calls for this service from all over the world.

Outsourced processing is a legitimate business model. If a photographer is a one person shop, it may be difficult for them to wear all the hats it takes to keep a photography business going. It's hard to be out there taking photos and then spend time at your desk processing them, not to mention all the marketing, billing, accounting and other hats the small business person has to wear. In addition, while photographers like to take pictures, that doesn't mean they like to process images or even that they are as good at it as someone else might be. Some photographers may actually be able to better serve their customers by using outsourcing - but that's not us.

Outsourcing also works for large companies that hire a stable of photographers. They can keep the photographers in the field and avoid the expense of additional staff for processing the images. The size of these companies has already reduced the level of personal service provided, so outsourcing just makes them more profitable without compromising a tradition of individualized customer service. We hang our hat on personalized service, so it just doesn't work for us.

Our Picky Processing Procedures

To understand the care we take with our processing, it helps to know we take all our shots in HDR (High Dynamic Range), a photo setting that takes multiple shots of the same image in several exposures. Not all photographers embrace HDR, but it is ideal for real estate photography. HDR eliminates the need to carry around multiple flashes and extra lighting. Bill is able to go in and get his shots in a timely manner without juggling extra equipment.

The reason most photographers don't use HDR is because it adds an extra step to processing. The multiple exposure shots must be combined into one image. Jane's very non-technical term for this is "mooshing." There are programs which will batch-process this step of the procedure for us, but we tested a number of them and in every case, mooshing each set individually gave us better results, so that's what we do.

After we have mooshed all the shots, we get down to the business of editing each one. We don't throw the shots into some auto-processor that digitally reads each shot and makes auto-adjustments. We give each shot the human eye treatment - brightening rooms, removing shadows, adjusting white balance, making green grass, adding blue skies - because humans are the ones who will be looking at your listing online. Our editing program has all the built-in, automatic features you can imagine and it helps, but we don't stop there. We're too picky for that.

When Jane finishes with a batch, we have one more important step, an inspection by Bill. Is each image Jane processed the best possible representation of what Bill photographed? We don't want photos which are so over-processed they look like art projects. The home shouldn't be unrecognizable, but our images should put the home's best foot forward with true colors and realistic representations of space. This is quality control Spot On Images' style, but in truth, our clients are always the final judge. We guarantee 100% satisfaction, so even if Bill and Jane are satisfied, if you aren't, then we're not finished.

We believe our business model allows us to deliver the highest quality images with the most individualized personal service for the best possible value. We don't even want to be everybody's real estate photographer, but we might be just who you're looking for. Give us a call at 214-499-6519 to see if our brand of service meets your discerning preferences.

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