top of page

5 photos every interior designer needs in their portfolio

If you ever wonder what photos you need for your interior design portfolio, this is for you. Don't miss these 5 types of photos every designer needs.

Design by Sarah Ponden Interiors

The human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text, making visual assets essential to make a positive impression in an instant.

When it comes to interior design, it is expected that a designer will share photos of their projects so that prospective clients can understand the design style.

But did you know there are different ways of photographing a space that can greatly impact a designers ability to share their work? Check out my 5 types of interior photos that I think will benefit any interior design portfolio.

ONE | The full room shot

Full room shots showcase the designers skillset of bringing the entire room together in a cohesive way, sometimes even showing how adjoining rooms interact with each other. These are statement photos, they transport the audience to the room. They make a quick first impression and leave your audience in awe.

These are the most important to document for a design portfolio and I always start my interiors photoshoots with full room shots.

Design by The Finish Co.

TWO | The details

Do not forget about the detail shots. They are easier for the audience to consume, visually they don't have to digest as much information as they would looking at a full room photo. I create detail shots to bring focus to a specific aspect of the design that we think is a priority to call out to the audience. When viewing a full room image you may not notice the little details, the pattern of the tile, the texture of the wallpaper. But in a detail shot or an intentional vignette, you have control over where you bring the audience's eyes.

Having detail shots in your portfolio enables you to talk about all of the elements and components of a design. These are the things that can be very overwhelming for a home owner to bring together themselves but as the designer you know all of the right products, hardware, and materials they need to create the space of their dreams. Take these photos so that you can show them and easily articulate this.

Design by Rebecca Staub Staging & Designs

THREE | The story

There is a story to every design, you create spaces around your clients wants and needs. Many designers get to know their clients on a personal level, and are committed to bringing them a design that changes their life for the better.

Photos that capture stories are a great way to articular the true customization of your process with prospective clients, showing them examples of how you have catered to the specific needs of a client in the past. This is a winning strategy for marketing when you have the ability to add in commentary (specifically when presenting to a potential client or sharing on social media).

The images below are an example of a story, this primary bathroom was created by Jocelyn of August Oliver Interiors for her client who is a Mother of 3 boys. The client wanted one room she can escape to. The design is luxurious and feminine and gives her that special place that is just for her.

Design by August Oliver Interiors

FOUR | Functionality

You have likely gone above and beyond to maximize the space as much as possible, balancing functionality with aesthetics. These things should not go unnoticed!

In the examples below, Abigail of August Interiors maximized this kitchen + dining area. There is even a secret closet hiding behind the beautiful bar area, so that her client has extra space to store things while keeping them out of sight. Another example is the spice drawer which keeps all the daily cooking necessities easily accessible but in a tidy hidden space. These "small" moments in a home add up to big improvements in your clients lives, and are worth capturing.

Design by August Interiors

FIVE | The Designer

Last, but NOT least... the designer!

I don't suggest combining headshots or a branding session into the interiors session, I think interiors and branding photoshoots have two different missions and purposes. However, while having the space professionally photographed, I do think it is a huge miss not to get photos of the designer or the design team in the space.

These can be posed, like the first example below. Or they can be more candid, of the team interacting with and styling the space, like the second and third photo examples.

Either way, don't hide from the camera. There are many proven reasons why showing the face behind the business is a highly effective tool.

Design credit from left to right: Woodland Partners | Rebecca Staub Staging & Design | The Finish Co.

At Abby Cole Photography, I work with Interior Designers in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and beyond to capture residential and commercial design projects. My work has a timeless, classic look with an aethestice that is easy for the audience to digest and leaves them feeling inspired. If you would like help with building your portfolio or capturing your work, I would love to work with you!

All photographs copyright of Abby Cole Photography.


bottom of page