About Chris Atkins


I got started with photography in 2007 when I was a real estate agent working with the Tim Wood Group (Coldwell Banker)in Big Bear Lake, CA.

Prior to that time I had spent 15 years working in the computer industry servicing Sun Microsystems servers and workstation with various companies in southern California.

In 2004 I felt the need to make some big changes in my life so I moved from Orange County to Big bear Lake and got my real estate license.

In the process of creating a database of potential clients, I needed to get exterior pictures of lots of cabins up here and so there is how I became interested in photography.

I was always artistic and as a young boy spent a lot of time drawing pencil sketches and was very interested also in music. By the time I was maybe 10 or 12 I had decided I wanted to be a professional bass player.

I pursued that goal up until the age of about 23 at which time I was playing in a Pasadena based band called Public Eye. We played all the major clubs in the LA area, wrote our own music, and had a pretty loyal following but at some point I had decided the music industry wasn't right for my personality and temperment.

Anyhow, fast forward to 2008... Once I picked up a camera and started learning about photography, I realized very quickly that it was a great fit for me as it combined artistic vision with technical 'know how' and computers which I was quite familiar with.

So I just ran with it and developed my own personal shooting and image processing style. Initially I did what lots of real estate photographers still do which is shoot brackets at different exposures and then combine them into an HDR rendering using either photomatix or a program called Enfuse.

At first I thought these images looked good until I took a course on interior photography where the use of speedlights (multiple off camera flashes) was the method of choice and I quickly realized there is just no way HDR can compare to what you can do with proper lighting technique.

I shoot nearly all my interiors this way now utilizing anywhere from 1 to 5 or more speedlights in a given shot. All my images are processed using mainly Adoble Bridge, Lightroom, and Photoshop. Being proficient with these programs is imperative to getting high quality images and I have spent years honing my skills to get to the level I am at now.

Architectural photography is my passion and I love what I do. Hopefully it will be a career that will last me many years to come.

Some of the gear I use is:

  • Canon 5D Mark II DSLR body
  • 17-40MM L Glass Wide ANgle LEns
  • Nikon SB80DX Speedlites
  • Yongnou Speedlights and remote radio triggers
  • Camranger wireless camera controller connected with an ipad.

Big jobs may require the use of high output lighting and different lenses but for the bulk of what I do, this gear is more than sufficient.

You can contact me by email at chris@chrisatkinsphotography.com or via my cell phone at 909-809-8814

My Services