2 Steps to Determine Your Photography Style
When you are first starting out in your photography business, deciding on your photography style can be as difficult as choosing what to wear to school as a teenager…and we all know what a process that can be! You may not be quite sure who you are as a photographer yet, so it can be difficult to determine what form of editing and shooting will best fit the work you want to create.
I began my photography business five years ago, and I had no idea what my style was! I was shooting everything that came my way, and my editing was far from consistent. I used lots of free (i.e. Random!) Photoshop actions, took many ‘tilted’ photos, and generally had little knowledge of composition and posing. Let me say that, looking back, there’s nothing wrong with this! We all have to start somewhere, and it’s ok to experiment until things begin to feel right. I had a very long way to go to arrive at what my photography style would eventually become, but I’m thankful to say, I have reached a very happy place in that journey.
I’m happy to share two simple tips that will assist you in your style search!
1 – Do a little homework: One practice that led me in the right direction when determining my style was gathering my favorite images and figuring out why I loved them. Many times, it was the joy found in my subjects’ faces, accompanied with lots of color. I quickly realized that I wanted to be a photographer who emphasized happy, genuine moments surrounded by splashes of vibrant color. Also, notice your mood during sessions and while editing – if you catch yourself being excited about certain sessions, that’s a great indictor of what your style could be!
2 – Your style isn’t just one thing; it’s a combination of your editing and composition choices. Do you love the hazy look of film? Or maybe you (like me!) love the energy behind bold, bright colors? What about your composition? Do you gravitate towards the small details and moments, such as a baby’s toes or how tightly a child is holding their ‘lovie’? Maybe you prefer the big picture: wide angles, large inclusion of the background, and capturing everything happening in a large space. The more you practice and pay attention to how and what you shoot, the faster you will grow into your style.
Discovering your style will take time and a little introspection. Photograph and edit in ways that make you feel excited to share your work with the world, and your style will soon emerge!