Four images showing different shots of vinyl flooring and photographer, Chris, taking pictures with the text "Real Product Photos With Photographer Chris Garrett"

What You See is What You Get

It should be, but with some flooring manufacturers, it’s not. Without proper care, the images of flooring designs found in brochures, catalogs, and websites can differ drastically from their real-life counterparts. While nothing is quite as useful as seeing an actual flooring plank in the space it will be installed in, Urban Surfaces has developed a meticulous system that ensures our product images are as close as possible to the real thing.

The Real Thing

When you see a picture of Urban Surfaces flooring, whether it is in print or on a screen, that is an actual photograph of a real plank bearing that specific design. We hire in-house, professional photographers who painstakingly consider lighting, angles, arrangement, variation in designs, and consistency across all photo shoots. These procedures take time, but they are worth every minute.


A view of a small room with ladder, lighting, plank boxes, and Chris taking photos of the installed floor


Some manufacturers hire inexperienced or careless photographers who simply capture images without taking care to show how light naturally falls on the plank and its texture. Where are the highlights and shadows? These things matter to give you the best possible two-dimensional perception of what each design will actually look like in your three-dimensional space.

“It is my responsibility to capture and depict every product with the highest degree of accuracy possible. Every single asset is far more than just a ‘pretty picture.’ These are decision points for our partners that transform projects and the lives surrounding them. They are a reflection of the level of quality we are known to provide. To compete at the highest levels, even the little things are of paramount importance, and I believe in our company and the service we offer.”

(Chris Garrett, In-House Photographer for Urban Surfaces)


Chris smiling with arms folded. Text says "Chris Garrett, In-House Photographer for Urban Surfaces"

Still the Best

What you see, what a camera sees, and what is displayed on tablet, phone, monitor, etc. are all potentially very different things. Our post-processing procedure ensures that what the human eye sees is closely approximated to what a standard digital display will show you.

“I can tell you all about exposures, apertures, angles, lighting, the falloff with the inverse square law, etc., but none of that matters without the most important thing: the customer experience – which, in my role, is to communicate exactly what we deliver, and our partners tend to value how a particular color feels in their space. It is my job to give that to them accurately. The top-down photos give you a sense of a flooring pattern and its characteristics, while the close-ups give you a sense of detail and how it reacts to bright spots and shadows. The materials we produce can best be described as the warm and welcoming handshake of a partner you can trust.”

(Chris Garrett, In-House Photographer for Urban Surfaces)


Chris positioning a plank on top of an upside-down plank to photograph both sides.


Slight variations between flooring batches can be another source of inaccuracy in floor design images. That’s why we do yearly audits of our images to make sure they maintain the utmost accuracy when compared to the planks that arrive for your project.


Chris looking at Urban Surfaces' wall of samples in their showroom while holding a laptop with a sample on-screen.

Only Pleasant Surprises

Unpleasant surprises are sadly very common in all industries. Who hasn’t ordered something, only to find it’s not even close to what they expected? We take pride in our ability to deliver on our promises and supply exactly what was ordered, on time. Through our diligent photographic process, we ensure that, when your samples arrive, the only surprises will be pleasant ones.

Bonus Tip: When viewing any flooring designs, paint swatches, etc., make sure your device’s display settings are unmodified, brightness is set to a normal level, and blue-light filtering features such as Apple’s Night Shift are turned off.


Urban Surfaces logo banner in green