Blog - How to photograph and film your dolls’ house

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How to photograph and film your dolls’ house

15 October 2012

Have you ever taken a picture of your dolls’ house, only to find the results fail to do justice to all the effort and imagination you’ve put into making your house look beautiful?

Lovely photo sent in to The Dolls House Emporium
Don’t worry, help is at hand. This updated series of tips previously published by The Dolls House Emporium for stills (and now with added info for when you want to film a short video on your phone or digital camera) to share with other enthusiasts, your family and your friends.
Let’s start with the camera you use.
Make it digital
There are many good cameras around, so any digital one will do the trick! Using digital also allows you to easily sending your pictures via the Internet or share them online at facebook or Pinterest.
Avoid blurry images
Use a tripod! If you haven’t got one then any sturdy surface such as a table or stool will be sufficient to prevent the camera from moving when you take the picture. And because the camera is stationary, you can concentrate on composing the shot you want to take.
If you’re shooting a video, you’ll still need to stabilise your camera: although many cameras have built in digital stabilisers you still can’t beat a tripod. If you’re using your phone or don’t have access to a tripod, then rest your camera on a chair or a book while you’re performing! 
Get the lighting right
Lovely photo sent in to The Dolls House EmporiumTry to use natural light and never flash.  If you’re outdoors, the ideal lighting conditions are on an overcast day – this gives a much more natural and softer light than when the sun is directly overhead.
If you’re indoors, use the light coming from a window and always photograph with the light behind you, not straight into it.
That’s because the camera’s in-built light meter will register the brightest light and you’ll end up with your dolls’ house in shadow.
For video, the best result will be to turn on all the available lights in the room. Try to shoot when daylight is available – the sun is a massive light… open your curtains!
Think about the background
Make sure you only photograph what you want people to see and not items in the background such as plants or furniture or overly patterned wallpaper.
We have many sent in with a cluttered bookcase as the background!
Try to move your work in front of something neutral, a plain wall or plain coloured sheet behind the subject.
You could even create some sort of backdrop that will enhance your subject such as painting a seascape on an old white sheet to give the effect of a coastal village.
Wired for sound
If you’re talking about your project on video remember to speak calmly and accentuate your voice.
Most camera microphones are on the front so if you’re behind the lens, remember to compensate for this and speak ‘loud and proud’!
More tips tomorrow! In the meantime, here's one of our own most popular videos, the new Chateau!
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