As a budding photographer have you ever asked yourself what kind of photography should I get into or as a pro maybe you are looking to diversify, or maybe you are just curious about photography and want to know what kinds of photography are out there. If that’s you then this article will hopefully give you a bit of insight into how large and diverse the world of photography is.
- Fashion Photography
- Travel Photography
- Landscape Photography
- Wildlife Photography
- Architecture Photography
- Street Photography
- Black and White Photography
- Macro Photography
- Still Life Photography
- Product Photography
- Food Photography
- Aerial Photography
- Stock Photography
Photo by Banjo Emerson Mathew on Unsplash
An all-time favorite, with so many subjects this is one of the most popular forms of photography. In addition, it’s one of the more lucrative forms. People love to get their picture taken and in every stage of life. From baby pictures to school photos to senior photos to family photoshoots just to name a few. Another reason it’s so popular is that modern mobile phones excel at portraiture. The portrait mode on a mobile phone blurs the background creating a crisp focused image of the subject. When your mobile phone does such a good job it's no wonder it's such a popular choice.
Photo by Steve Gale on Unsplash
A variant of portraiture and increasingly popular in today's culture of social media and sharing. In essence, taking a selfie is quite simple, but taking a really good selfie is another story. One of the ways to improve your selfies is to clean your lens, good light, and a flattering angle, and don’t forget to use portrait mode for a more professional look.
Photo by Zeny Rosalina on Unsplash
Many people love taking photos of themselves in their clothing and it doesn’t take a professional camera to get a good shot. The things to focus on here are as usual good lighting and make sure to highlight the clothing. Keep your pose simple and while you can be creative with the location of the shot don’t get so carried away that people forget to look at the clothing.
One of my favorites, the trick is being able to capture an image that encapsulates the country and place you are in and to make the viewer feel the authenticity of the place as if they themselves are there. This kind of photography has always inspired me, not just because of the stunning photos but also because of the people who take them and the lives they live. Wandering the world in search of the next perfect photo. In addition, these people witness things and if they are lucky photograph them the likes of which most people never get to see. Quite often they have to risk their lives traveling through conflict zones or into dangerous landscapes to get that next perfect unique shot. Lastly, as your phone fits right in your pocket your mobile phone may have an edge over a bulky DSLR. If you need to capture something quickly your phone is your friend.
This for me is the best kind of photography (which is totally subjective of course). It’s quite similar to travel photography - however specifically limited to nature and landscapes and excluding people. You have to face nature in the eye and capture the best you can, often fighting harsh weather, treacherous terrain, and long climbs or hikes to get the perfect view. I think that feeling of overcoming the challenge and seeing the beautiful view and being able to capture it is one of the most rewarding feelings you can have.
This is a pretty tricky kind of photography and to be really good at it you do need the proper equipment. Now, this shouldn’t discourage you because with a little patience and practice you can capture some beautiful wildlife photography even with your phone. If the animals are moving like birds, it is crucial to set your shutter speed to something really fast otherwise you will just get a blurry picture. Getting close enough to your target is the tricky part either because the animals are flighty or they can be dangerous. This is the reason that professional wildlife photographers invest in a really good quality telephoto lens, so they can get a close-up shot while staying far enough away.
Photo by Stefan Odobasu on Unsplash
For the city photographer, this is a really cool kind of photography. It definitely depends on which city you are in but it's really fascinating to see the progression of architecture. Many cities have buildings that are hundreds of years old right next to brand new buildings and that contrast is a perfect thing to capture. Also, angle plays a really important role in architecture photography and can elevate a boring shot to a winning shot.
Similar to architecture photography where angle definitely comes into play but I feel that street photography is much more about capturing the soul and beating heart of the city or area you are in. Be it buildings, people, food, or live music every street has a defining feature waiting for you to discover it.
Black and White Photography
I think it's challenging to know which photos will look better black and white versus color. I'm sure it takes years of experience to crack the code. There is something quite soothing to black and white photography and it really makes the photographer think about what they are shooting as they need to imaging the shot with no colors and knowing that they can set up the best shot taking into account the lack of color. Contrast plays a crucial role in black and white photography.
This little hidden gem never ceases to amaze me. With camera technology advancing to the point that we can photograph in such detail things that are hard to perceive with the human eye. It's an area of photography that is still relatively new and undiscovered. I also think it's a great alternative if you live in a city but you like nature photography because a park might not offer you an astounding view but it will get you a couple of nice opportunities to shoot something close up like the center of a flower.
Still Life Photography
While this may not be the most exciting style of photography I think that it offers a huge amount of opportunity to showcase one's creativity. You take something mundane like a bowl of fruit and create a background that compliments it and highlights it. Your choice of complimentary items and lighting make or break the shot so choose carefully and let those creative juices flow.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, I played around a bit with this just because I was bored. It was quite fun though I think it would be more exciting if I got paid for it. For me, it is a creative challenge of highlighting and showcasing a specific product in a unique way that will get consumers more interested in purchasing it. Similar to still life photography how you choose the complimentary items and lighting for the shot have a big impact.
Here is a fun one! Everyone loves great food, but getting the perfect shot can be challenging. Now I would split this category into two. One is when you go to a restaurant, and you order a beautiful dish, and you grab a quick selfie to post on social media which is great, but the next level is doing this on a professional level. Creating or buying the necessary pieces for a home studio, cooking beautiful dishes, and photographing them in the best possible light and setting.
Here is one for all the drone lovers out there. Now it isn’t one hundred percent necessary to have a drone but unless you have access to a plane or something you really need one. There are many out there and their prices have been dropping as there are many competitors. To me, this is a whole new area of photography that I have never explored and really want to. I have seen some cool compositions and photos taken from drones that are really one of a kind.
Photo by Teo Duldulao on Unsplash
Shutterstock and Unsplash are some popular stock photo sites. Stock photography can be anything from items to people to landscapes. The idea here is that the photos are super high quality and you want to let others use them, either for money or for free (depends on the site). This is a really great way to start getting noticed as a photographer. Shoot some great photos and then put them up for sale or for free on a stock photo site and see how it does. If it gets a lot of downloads you can use that in your photography “resume”.
In conclusion, I hope these 15 types of photography can give you a glimpse into the vast world of photography. Remember to get out there and explore them for yourself before settling on one type. It’s important to always try things before you dismiss them. As always, go out and be creative, break the rules, and have fun capturing great photos!