Indoor Photography Settings with Natural Light | Photography Educator

I have been photographing families indoors for more than 10 years. And while in-home photography is definitely growing, there are still so many photographers who are genuinely terrified of it because they are unsure of indoor photography settings.

I mean, they love the “idea” of it but when you ask them why they don’t offer it themselves, they look at me like a deer in headlights.

As many times as I have shared this hot tip, it still never ceases to amaze me how many people still don’t know it. The number one thing you need to know about successful in-home photography is this:

Bump up your ISO as high as you need to in order to expose

properly in-camera.

Yes, that means 2500, 3200, 5000, 8000, OR HIGHER.

I know, maybe you just choked on your cup of coffee while reading that. But this is THE way that in-home photographers do their job.

Take a look at literally any incredible in-home photographer and THIS is how they get the images they get. Clare does it. Yasmina does it. Elena does it. Angela does it. Trust me, this is not just my tip, it is a known fact in the industry.

In-home photographers are not capable of magic.

We don’t only shoot inside homes with amazing natural light.

We don’t have a secret weapon that you don’t have.

We simply have the knowledge and confidence, that our cameras, which we invested thousands of dollars in, are machines created to handle high ISO. That is why the ISO dial is built to go that high!

Honestly, during every single in-person mentoring session I have ever had, THIS has been the lesson that blows minds the most. Another photographer will watch me shoot, hear my settings, and see the images on the back of my camera and they are SHOCKED that I shoot so high.

And then, it is like a weight comes off their shoulders and they are free. The lightbulb goes off. They adjust their settings and try it for themselves and you can practically hear the angels singing.

Here is the truth, in a home with GOOD natural light, I normally START my ISO at 2500. And I go up from there. If you are used to only shooting outdoors, this can be really startling at first.

And I can hear you right now,

“But Sabrina, what about the grain?!?!?!”

Listen to me: When you expose properly, there is little to no grain.

Let me repeat that for those of you in the back: When YOU expose PROPERLY in CAMERA, you have LITTLE to NO grain. 

Is there going to be more grain than an outdoor photo? Of course.

Is it enough grain that your clients will question your ability and skill? Absolutely not.

Scroll through the images below. This home is DARK. Every single image is shot between 4000 and 8000 ISO. Every. Single. One.

So, I hope that this post has inspired you to go out and try a higher ISO. I hope that this gives you the confidence to start capturing clients in their homes because it really is the best!

If you are interested in learning more about an in-person mentoring session with me where we shoot alongside each other and cover all the things, you can reach out to me here for availability and details. Or if online coaching is a better option for you, grab a 90 minute coaching call HERE.


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  1. Melissa says:

    Thank you for posting this! Exactly what I needed!!!

  2. Melissa says:

    Thank you for posting this! Exactly what I needed!!!

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