We’re so excited you’ve decided to share your unique piece of land with our community of outdoors-lovers and adventure-seekers, and we’re even more excited that you want it to look its best. Listings with beautiful photos get more clicks, so it’s important that you spend some time taking good photos. We’ve put together a quick guide on how to take the best pictures of your listing, no previous photography experience necessary.
What You’ll Need
- Smartphone or DSLR camera (either is fine)
- Good lighting (avoid shooting on a rainy day or at nighttime)
- Optional: Model (this can be you, a friend, or family member)
Photo by Megan Kantor at High Road Santuario, NM.
1. Clean up clutter and prep the scene
To help make the land more inviting, clean up anything you think might deter a camper, like trash, debris, or clutter.
🏡 If your listing is a structure (like a cabin, yurt, or treehouse), you should tidy it up, make the bed, and open all curtains. It can be helpful to pretend that you’re the camper walking into the structure for the first time—how would you like it to be presented to you?
⛺ If your listing is a tent site, clear the spot where the camper’s tent will go. This might mean mowing the grass and trimming back brush.
🏕️ Pro tip: Staging is important for tent sites
You don’t need to offer a tent to your campers, but it sure helps them imagine themselves there in photos.
Photo by Joe and Kathrina Merrill at Kern River Canyon, CA.
2. Use bright, natural light
🛋️ If you’re shooting an interior, you’ll want as much light as possible, so make sure you’re taking these photos on a bright day.
- Open all curtains and turn on all lights.
- Make sure you’re not focussing on a window or light source when you take your shot, as it’ll make the rest of the interior appear very dark—instead, tap your finger on a darker area of the image and take your photo once it’s brightened up.
☀️ If you’re shooting an exterior or tent site, avoid shooting when it’s dark or rainy outside. Bright, sunny photos are always a safe bet, but if you want to go above and beyond, you can take your photos during the Golden Hour—an hour or so before the sun sets when everything is warm and glowy.
Photo by Megan Kantor at Rustic Glamorous Artist’s Cabin, CO.
3. Take horizontally-oriented photos
There’s nothing more important than a nice wide, horizontally-oriented photo of where the camper will be sleeping. And we don’t mean the bed, we mean the entire site (be it a cabin, yurt, or tent spot.)
The more zoomed out, the better: the camper will want to see the area surrounding where they’re sleeping too, whether it’s the forest around a cabin or the grassy meadow where they’ll pitch their tent.
If you were making a feature film about your land, think of this photo as the “opening shot.”
Photo by Benton at Big Sky Farm, TN.
4. Take photos of the land and what makes it special
Show Hipcampers what makes your land special. Do you have goats or chickens? Is there a water body on the land? Views of rolling hills? An outdoor pizza oven or bathtub? Hipcampers will love seeing how unique your land is.
📸 Pro tip: Shoot like a professional
Looking to up your photography game? Check out the guidelines we provide to our professional photographers here. The top 3 photos we like to see:
Main photo by Stepfanie Aguilar at Serenity Rustic Retreat, CA.