How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions

How to Photograph a Home for Awards Submissions – Our Approach

Maui based architect Marc Taron of Arquitectura reached out to Maui Real Estate Photographer, Dave Tonnes of PanaViz to photograph this custom home with the intent of submitting it for awards consideration. And it was a winner!

Photography for Awards Submissions
Sculptural Maui Home

How to Photograph a Home for Awards Submissions

Listen to your client. We find out elements are important to the the architect, design team and owners.

Photography Tools. Use appropriate architectural photography tools to capture these elements. For this home, we used a drone, elevated pole photography and standard interior/exterior photography equipment.

Trust the Photographers Eye. We try to capture all the elements that are important to our clients. But at the end of the day, Dave trusts his instinct and captures scenes and images that make sense to him. These images usually end up being the “hero” shots that end up getting published.

Take Your Time. We do not hurry these shoots. Images are captured over a period of time. Sometimes it takes a few days if weather is a factor. We spent and entire day, from dawn to nightfall, photographing this home.

Give Your Clients Lots of Image Choices. We gave the team a vast selection of images (130 images!) to choose from for their awards submission.

Get Ready for Exposure. If a home does win any awards, your images will be featured in magazines, newspapers, and end up on the covers of industry magazines.

The Story of the Award Winning Home by Maui Architect Marc Taron

The owners, Neil and Suzette Felder wanted their new home to be unique and creative, and to preserve the ocean view from off their property. They selected Marc, who is known for designing high-end homes with indoor-outdoor features that capture incredible views.

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
Dramatic and Different

Neil and I both wanted something very different, and it is. That was the vision.

Suzette, Homewoner

They ended up with a daringly different home which also harmonizes with its coastal surroundings.

Photography of a Home for Award Submissions
An aerial view of the property shows off the home’s most enviable asset— its frontage to Keawakapu Beach.

Because the property is not subject to the confines of an association’s design guidelines, Taron was able to extend his creativity beyond the limits of some of his other projects. Taron’s first drawings were innovative, but not quite over-the-top enough for the Felders.

Photography of a Home for Award Submissions

I was like, ‘All right, gloves are off, baby,’ and that’s when I started really coming up with something out of the norm.

Marc Taron
Photography of a Home for Award Submissions
The Felders wanted to share the ocean view and have it become part of the home’s design.

At the top of the Felders’ wish list for their home was the ability to see the ocean through the house from the street.

Beachfront Home

“That’s really something,” Taron says, noting that many beachfront houses block the view due to their size and privacy barriers.

It’s clearly not Hawaiiana-style, but with its curves and simple forms, the house seems to blend into the lot.

Marc Taron, Architect

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
A tile walkway stretches across the reflecting pool, leading the homeowners from the mauka side of the property into their home.

Entering the home is an experience itself. From the garage, the Felders can walk along an elevated walkway into the second floor of the home or descend an open staircase to the lower level; or, they can ride a glass elevator.

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
Walls of windows supplied by Maui Windows & Doors allow the interior of the garage and the home itself to appear on display.

Taron designed the house to be modern, sculptural and open. The garage is at street level, and with its two walls of glass windows, the Felders’ Porsche appears to be on display.

From the street, an open stairway with LED lights beneath each tread leads to a tiled walkway over a reflecting pool. This is illuminated at night by a flickering starfield below the water’s surface, as though a reflection of the night sky.

Photography for Awards Submissions

Along the retaining walls, waterfalls pour into the reflecting pool, adding to the ambiance.

Inside, the home is completely open. The walkway leads into the great room, an open concept comprised of the kitchen, dining and living areas that extends to the second story of the home.

I look at the house itself as a piece of art, and that’s why it was important for the ocean to be a part of that artwork.

Neil, Owner
The two-story great room has two stories of windows, letting the owners see the ocean from anywhere in the home.

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
The Home is Super Open
Photography for Awards Submissions
The kitchen’s upper cabinets were color-matched to the green in the Amazonite quartzite countertop.

Kitchen and bath designer Cindy Tervola of Tervola Designs used a color palette drawn from the kitchen’s Amazonite quartzite countertop, a stone that Suzette really liked.

The modern kitchen has two-tone, flat-panel European cabinetry, mixing light green upper cabinets that were color matched to the countertop with high-gloss white lacquer, including matching panels for the Thermador appliances.

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
The master bath has both an outdoor and indoor shower, and the husband and wife each have their own floating vanity with under-cabinet LED lighting. Hers is shown here.

Through Fleetwood doors from Pacific Source that can be pulled completely open, the great room extends outside to the pool deck and lawn before reaching the beach and ocean beyond. The pool deck is partially shaded by a cantilevered lanai from the second floor, which also inspired the design of the home’s makai-facing exterior.

A support system was necessary for the cantilever lanai, and rather than use a column, Taron designed a sculptural, artistic arch that makes a bold statement. The arch extends from the pool up through the lanai to provide support, and then continues past a guest bedroom — which creates shade for the room — and crests above the roofline. Taron mimicked the shape of the arch throughout the home’s roof, with additional curves to represent a set of rolling waves.

The arch, which supports the cantilever lanai, has the added benefit of providing shade for this guest bedroom.

“It was ingenious,” Neil says of the structural arch, noting that it allows the rest of the area to remain completely open.

How to Photograph a Home for Award Submissions
The owners spend most of their time on the ocean front side of the home.
Oceanview from the bedrooms.

The Felders spend most of their time on this side of the house, closest to the ocean but set back enough to enjoy the view from any part of their home. They never tire of it.

I’m always amazed at how beautiful it is. It’s so unique. It’s just beautiful.

Suzette, Homeowner

Awards and Publications

The hard work of the entire team was recognized. The home won accolades and generated many headlines and magazine stories.

Resource Guide

Arquitectura LLC
(Marc Taron, architect)
1325 Mo‘ohele St., Wailuku

Blackrock Stone & Tile LLC
1384 Front St., Lahaina

Buddy L & Sons Construction, Inc.
(general contractor)
PO Box 543, Kīhei

Cindy Tervola, Tervola Designs
(interior designer)
142 Kupuohi St., Ste. F6, Lahaina

Coastline Stone and Tile, Inc.
(tile for interior and lānai)
1765 S. Kīhei Rd., Kīhei

DFG Masonry, Inc.
12 Mano Dr., Kula

Grace Electrical Services
1097 Kaha‘apo Loop, Kīhei

Hamai Appliance
332 E. Wākea Ave., Kahului

Hilltop Contractors, LLC
(stucco, rock wall, tile for entry walkway)
2860 Kauhale St., Kīhei

Hughes Landscape Architecture, LLC
(landscaping, waterfall design)
735 Bishop St., Ste. 308, Honolulu

Martin & Chock
(structural engineering)
1132 Bishop St., Ste. 1550, Honolulu

Maui Windows & Doors
54 Maui Lani Pkwy, Ste. #2050, Wailuku

Mhel Ramos-Vieth, Studio M Hawaii/Designline Studio
(interior designer)

Otomo Engineering
(civil engineer)
305 S. High St., # 102, Wailuku

Pure Image Pools
2377 Pu‘u Mala Pl., Kīhei

Ram Pacific Roofing
904 Mahealani St., Kīhei

Read Lighting
335 E. Wakea Ave., Kahului

Tradewinds Air Conditioning Inc.
430 Kaulana St., Kahului

Yadao Construction

Oahu Real Estate Photography I am an Oahu Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most beautiful and unique
Kauai Real Estate Photographer I am a Kauai Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most beautiful and unique
Maui Real Estate Photographer Maui Real Estate Photographer. I am a Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most
Kona Real Estate Photographer Kona Real Estate Photographer.   I am a Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most

David Tonnes is an architectural photographer based in Hawaii with a focus on capturing luxury homes.

See our Maui Real Estate Photography here.

Fairytale Hawaii Home Photos

Hobbit House in Hawaii Is an Island Gem

Dave Tonnes of PanaViz has photographed all sorts of very cool Hawaii homes. This particular home is very unique, and we wanted to share it with you.

Dave’s wife (me) and our daughter tagged along on this shoot. We were given a personal tour by the owners, who lovingly built this home.

Hobbit House with the Ko’alau Mountain Range Behind it

This magical home has become colloquially known by locals as “Hobbit House.” It is a whimsical abode that evokes Middle Earth in the midst of tropical Hawaii.

Close to Waimanalo Beach

It has a very desirable location, right across the street from Waimanalo Beach, which is consistently ranked as one of best beaches in the United States. It is located in South Western part of Oahu.

Hobbit House Exterior

It really is a storybook-style home with nooks and crannies with interesting detail all throughout.

This home was artfully designed by the owners, who themselves hand crafted many parts of the home.

Gorgeous Shingles

I particularly loved the cedar shingles arranged in layers on the roof to resemble waves. The home owner pointed out the shingles, and joked about his state of mind when he was putting it in!

The rustic 25-foot Ohia posts in the central foyer were flanked by lava rock.


Indonesian hardwoods, and a cantilevered staircase taking full advantage of ocean views.


The kitchen had so many interesting details, such as shells and rock fossils embedded in the counter-tops.

Living Area
One of the Bedrooms
Another one of the bathrooms
One of the bathrooms

Fruit trees flourish in the garden, and there’s an outdoor hot tub nestled in the lush foliage, along with a koi pond and water feature built into a rock wall.

Outdoor hot tub
Koi pond

Oahu Real Estate Photography I am an Oahu Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most beautiful and unique
Kauai Real Estate Photographer I am a Kauai Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most beautiful and unique
Maui Real Estate Photographer Maui Real Estate Photographer. I am a Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most
Kona Real Estate Photographer Kona Real Estate Photographer.   I am a Real Estate Photographer fortunate enough to photograph the most

David Tonnes is an architectural photographer based in Hawaii with a focus on capturing luxury homes.

Interior Design Photography

Oahu Real Estate Photographer

Interior Design Photography

Interior design photography can some times take a back seat in a big project.  As an architectural photographer, I capture the big picture.  I take aerial photographs that show the location, layout and overall structure of a building.

Then I focus on the facade and exteriors.  I take photos from different elevations, vantage points and at different times of the day.

Then I move on to the interiors.  I take photos of living areas, the kitchen and bedrooms and more.  I keep the verticals vertical.  I try to showcase the life that will be had in a space.

My photography shows the vision of the architect.

The team or person that makes a place hospitable and inviting is the interior designer.  They pick the furniture and furnishings.  They select the lights and fixtures.  They procure and install works of art.  They showcase the creativity of known and unsung artists.  They select products that only live in obscure catalogs. 

Focusing on the Small Details

We work with many such designers, and try to take some time to photograph the little details of their work.

We especially love it when they win industry awards with our photos.  Cheers to the interior and exterior designers out there! 

Interior Design Photography – PanaViz Photographer

Hawaii Architectural Photographer, PanaViz provides photography services to hotels, resorts, commercial and residential real estate and luxury condominiums for lease in Hawaii and beyond.

Our clients include architecture firms, developers, interior design firms, architectural design firms, marketing agencies, retails chains, hospitals, interior decorators, senior living communities, healthcare organizations, and schools.

See our architecture photography here.   See his Texas apartment photography services here.  See award winning apartment photography here. See our resort photography here.

Cozy Oahu Home

Our showcase of a small footprint, cozy Oahu home.

Maluhia means “Peace” in Hawaiian and is in Kailua, known for its turquoise waters and white sandy beaches,
Lounge on the terrace or enjoy a barbecued meal in the shaded outdoor dining area.
Spend a lazy day in the property’s lagoon-shaped swimming pool complete with a waterfall feature and surrounding tropical greenery.
Restful atmosphere with soft, neutral hued furnishing
Open kitchen fully equipped with modern appliances, lots of counter space and a breakfast bar.
Living Area
Cuddle up for a night in of movies.
A lovely nook with cozy seating and writing desk.
The master suite with a king-sized bed.
A soaker tub in its spacious en-suite.
Em-suite bathroom.
King sized beds.
Four bedrooms.
Kids room.
Jack and Jill Bathroom
At night, head into the hot tub and soak under the stars.

Honolulu real estate photography by PanaViz

See Oahu vacation rental photography here

Oahu real estate photography pricing here.