I fell in love with this rustic dream house as much as I have fallen for photography!

Close your eyes. Actually, don’t; you wouldn’t be able to read this if your eyes are closed. So just imagine your dream house. Is it a studio apartment in New York City? Is it a villa on a hill? Well, my dream a cabin nestled in the forest by a babbling brook. And you won’t believe it. No, I didn’t buy my rustic dream house but I did get to take photos of it! So if you’re here to see some rustic dream house photography to put on your mood board or wish list, you’re in the right place.

Riverfront Retreat cabin with forest and sunburst

Isn’t this place beautiful?! For those who already dead set on buying this cabin, I have some bad news and good news. It’s not for sale. However, it is an Airbnb! This is the Riverfront Retreat in Island Park, Idaho. It’s absolutely stunning with large windows, reclaimed wood, and a stunning view of a forest and sparking river. It’s the definition of rustic dream house. It reminds me a lot of these stunning cabins.

Let’s talk a little more about this photo. For this one, and the rest of the photos I’m about to show you, I did a lot of dodging and burning. Dodge and burn is a photography term that means to manually adjust how light or dark certain parts of an image is. For this one, I used dodge and burn to really emphasize the texture in the wood.

I also bracketed this image and all of the other ones. It’s really a must when doing rustic dream house photography. I took multiple images, some light and some dark. Next, I compiled them on my computer to make a beautifully exposed photograph.

front door of a rustic dream house cabin with sunset

I bracketed this image. However, even with bracketing, the sky was overexposed! So I manually added a sky in Photoshop. I also played a lot with dodge and burn. This gave it such a dramatic and moody feeling to it. Between the front door and the guest’s front door, there was a large pile of snow. So, I decided to edit that out using the clone tool in Photoshop.

rustic cabin balcony facing the forest with two chairs

I took this photo out on the cabin’s balcony. I really wanted to get a new perspective since the rest of my photos are outside facing in. When I was setting up for this photo, I tilted the chairs towards each other. I can’t really explain why I did this but I think it gives the image a lot more personality.

rustic dream house photography cabin with rock tower in front

At the rivers edge, there are these cute rock towers. I loved these details and  just new I had to photograph them. I think focusing on smaller details in architecture photography shows a lot of personality to the place.

When I bracketed this one, it did have a sky. But it was a boring sky. So, I decided to add a new sky. As you’ve probably noticed, I have done a different sky with every photo. This is because some skies look better than others in certain photos. It also shows that this cabin is beautiful in all types of lighting.


rustic dream house photography cabin by river with dramatic sunset

Ta-da! This is by far my favorite picture that I took. The lights really made this photo. It created little sunbursts, golden reflections, and a dreamy warmth to the whole photo. Because of how beautiful the lights and colors were, I just had to give it a dramatic sky. If this hasn’t convinced you that this is the pinnacle of rustic dream house photography, I don’t know what else will.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. You want to see the inside! Well, guess what? I made a post exclusively on the inside of Riverfront Retreat.