Once upon a time it was considered a no no to have humans in architectural and real estate photography. It was important to show exclusively the space photographed. Fewer elements in the image, the better the space will look and feel.The purpose of the job was to show the space after all, right? I actually did not use talents for a long time because it automatically became the point of attention in the photo, not just because of the person itself but also because of the way they where dressed.
But in many images the sense of scale was missing no matter how good the angle and the illumination was. It could be difficult to really know how big or small the space was. Having talents in my hotel and real estate images really has made this problem disappear. People somehow know automatically the approximate height of a human and can pretty much figure out the sense of space in the image. And, as far as being the point of attention, it can be easily taken care of by having the talent showing up moving. This can be achieved by either using slower shutter speeds in camera or having a blurring effect in post production.
Every now and then I get asked this question. And, of course, being a professional photographer, the answer is YES! A hotel should get great images from a photographer that is specialized in such imagery. Good images sell more and faster. It is just the way it is. Of course, even logical.
As a hospitality photographer, I , as well of most of you, have seen great looking and luxurious hotels, resorts and restaurants with crappy images. Hiring the right specialized photographer for a hotel shoot in witch millions were spent makes sense. Hiring the right photographer to show a hotel renovation in witch millions were spent just makes sense also. I hire a professional plumber or electrician for my home when ever they are in need, not a friend of a family member who "knows about that".
Looking into the photographer's website should give an idea of the photographer's work.
Beautiful architecture and beautiful decoration should be photographed by a photographer that understands it and that knows about it. Hire a professional.
It is incredible how one thing leads to another. Hotel photography took me to real estate photography and now to interior design photography. All of witch I love doing. I have been specializing in hotel and real estate photography for quite a white now. Because of my hotel management background, architectural and hotel photography just seemed a very logical step at this time in my career. But now, adding to this, I have been doing quiet a lot of interior design photography also. I can clearly see how these 3 types of specialized photography are related.
I have been using a technique I invented and call "points of light". It was just meant to be. This technique allows me to actually work alone when I have to travel and can't take my assistants. It is lightweight, fast and affordable for my clients. I don't know if I'm the only one using this technique, but it is a time saver. The best part of this technique is that I can use it very effectively in all of these 3 types of photography: hotel, real estate and interior design photography.
Here are some examples of "points of light":
Every week I take time to gather all new and relevant news about the hospitality industry at large. I try to divide the articles in hotel trends, new hotels, resorts, luxury hotels, travel, cruising industry, restaurants, etc., etc.
Because I'm a hotel and hospitality photographer, I take great care of the imagery in the magazine. Always when possible, the images have to create certain impact and help the text come to live.
Great photography sells in all industries. Its part of the brand, the company.
Please take a look at the "Hospitality Mag" by hotel photographer Thiago da Cunha here
Here is a list of points to take into consideration when searching for a professional hospitality photographer.
Firs of all, please search for a professional. Your hotel deserves it.
-Does it look professional?
-Is it organized and clean?
-Does it look like the photographer is a specialist on what he does by the kind of images on the website?
-Many hats. If the photographer has many job titles in his website (fashion photographer, wedding photographer, commercial photographer, food photographer, children photographer) it just means he is not a specialist in the hospitality imagery. Keep looking
-When searching for a photographer, do not take in consideration ONLY the price. I specially enjoy the negotiation part of my business. So if the price isn’t right for you, negotiate. This is a business. You have to negotiate.
-Don’t just use email. Try to talk to the photographer via Skype or phone. A photographer may have great prices for his work, but if he is a pain in the ass to work with, you will notice this right away and maybe not worth working with. Talking person to person really helps both parties know each other.
-What is his background in the hospitality industry. I have still to find another photographer that actually studied hotel management and fully understands how a hotel works. This is very important because many errors I have avoided just because I know how to make a bed or set a table within hotel standards.
-Languages. Speaking different languages is definitely a plus in the hospitality industry. My job gets done faster when I have to talk to people of different nationalities, languages, something very common inside a hotel or resort.
For more information and tips on this matter, please leave a comment or write to firstname.lastname@example.org
Take a moment to flip my online hospitality magazine at
I sometimes get so confused about given names to photographers. I started out to call my hospitality work as "hotel photography" or "hotel photographer". Witch I still don't know if it is right or not. I mean, some people might think that a hotel photographer is the guy on the beach taking photos of the tourists for souvenirs (a great business in resorts around the world). And that I'm not. At least not any more but I did started that way.
On a call with friend Selina Maitreya (from http://www.selinamaitreya.com/) back when I had the live radio show about photography here in the Dominican Republic, she asked me what was the one thing that I most loved doing in photography. I replied "hotel photography". She than corrected me. "Hospitality" is the word she used in order for people to understand what is it I photography. So now I say I photography the hospitality industry.
But, to photography the hospitality industry, hotels or resorts, I also have to know many other kinds of photography. Yes. Think about it. I have to know aerial photography because it is a must to photography the hotel's premises (buildings, golf courses, pools, beaches, etc.) from above.
I also have to know "interior photography". In the hospitality industry, I have to photograph the rooms, restaurants, spas, convention centers, gyms, etc. These are all know as interior photography work. Witch, by the way, is where I get confused with "architectural photography" and "interior photography". Both are basically the same except the interior I suppose is just for interiors. But, "architectural photography" to me can too be "interior photography".
Next comes food photography. I often have to photography food for not only the hotels, but also for the resorts and restaurants.
And finally comes the "real estate photography" or my personal one, "luxury homes photography". This too is such a big part of my photography in the hospitality industry. Many hotels and resorts offer or sell part off their rooms, houses or villas. All of witch have to be photographed in a very particular and professional way in order to "sell". Using the images of a professional real estate photographer makes the work of the seller much more easier.
So, I only understand that in order to do the hospitality industry photography well, I also have to do the interior photography well. And the food. And the aerial. And the real estate. And the luxury homes.
I would love to know from other points of view on this matter. Please leave a comment if you think it can contribute to the subject matter.
"Hotel photography" as I call it, could actually be what moves more people in the hospitality industry. The word of mouth still does the job in a personal way. People still believe and tend to feel more secure when someone (even though they don't know them) say something great about a place they visited. The internet changed this a lot in the last few years.
Images is what it is all about. Particularly good images. Good images sell. They sell food, they sell cars, they sell houses, trips and vacations. Good images move people from one point to another. This "moving" generates many businesses. Air tickets, cabs, airports, food courts, cruises, wedding venues, hotels, resorts, restaurants, etc., etc., all generate money from this moving action.
A hotel image is the first thing people see of their destination before arriving. The clear clean blue water of the beach they are going to stay really does create a sense of wanting to be there. The sunset overlooking your room terrace. The clean and perfectly made bed with a great view of a lonely ocean. All of these images do make someone what to be there.
A hotel photographer, specially one who has actually studied hotel management, is probably the best professional for this unique kind of photography.
It sure has been a long time since I made a magazine cover! 13 years have past from cover to cover! I can only thank Reynaldo Caminero, Bohio News chief director, Rosa Veras from sales, the lovely make-up artist Wendy Montero and my fellow photographers for such a compilation of great work of art.
Thanks to Santo Domingo Times for this great article!
Fotografo de hoteles. Read More