How to Define Your Photography Style

I spend a variety of my free time on the internet exploring the work of professional and novice photographers for concepts and inspiration. What I have found is that there’s a lot of mediocrity on the market and most of this is because of what I name a “lack of favor.”

Now, earlier than you get your knickers in a knot (you different photographers) I place myself firmly and squarely in that class of getting plenty of mediocrity circulating on the market for public consumption. This obtained me considering, how can I enhance on my pictures? My conclusion – picture fashion!

photography style

Surf the online as we speak and you will see that a plethora of photographers in any respect ranges whose portfolios are nothing however a schizophrenic journey via color, B&W, HDR, IR and God is aware of what else. Most of which is pure garbage merely on account of a scarcity of favor.

At this level you’re in all probability considering, “What is that this fashion thingy this nut bag is speaking about?” Think of it as your signature. there are numerous nice photographers on the market who possess what are simply recognizable signatures to their pictures. Adams, Beckerman, Gruen are a number of for whom I can simply determine their work by taking a look at their pictures just because they possess a sure look uniquely their very own – their signature, their fashion.

So why is that this necessary? In my fixed search to outline myself and my images I have laboured lengthy and exhausting to determine who, and extra importantly, what’s my focus in images. You hear photographers speak about their style with phrases corresponding to “Landscape Photographer”, “Wildlife Photographer”, “Street Photographer”, and so forth. I assume it is very important specialize, to concentrate on a specific area of images. Nevertheless, many photographers, comparable to myself, take all kinds of pictures lots of that are outdoors their chosen specialty both for enjoyable or for necessity (resembling right here on Ecuador Unplugged). In the top although, I firmly consider when you specialize then at the least ninety to ninety five% of your images time must be targeted on that space.

Specialization is essential however it doesn’t go far sufficient, most photographers cease at this level when it comes to defining their work and omit crucial facet – creating a particular picture type all their very own. Sure, the pictures are cleaned up, the color adjusted, and over Photoshopped and so on. In the top every photograph is totally totally different from the subsequent leaving the viewers with little to no sense of a gift or rising type from the photographer.

developing a photography style

“Sunset over Eastbourne Pier” captured by PictureSocial member Tony Bramham

Your Style Defines Your Images

Creating an individualistic fashion on your work is an evolutionary course of in images. You should experiment and dabble for a while earlier than you’ll be able to really decide how your photographs will look. Rarely will you be lucky sufficient to come across your personal distinctive signature instantly. There are many features to defining your personal fashion on your work and I have narrowed this down to 3 key elements that will help you alongside the best way.


What is your medium of selection? Is it color, black and white, HDR, and so on? Find a medium and stick with it, let it outline you. There is nothing extra distracting than taking a look at a portfolio that’s everywhere in the map, some O&W, some HDR, some IR, some color. It tells me that the photographer doesn’t know what he/she likes and actually is both interesting to the plenty or has not settled on, or cares about, their fashion. Similar to my specialization rule no less than ninety five% of my targeted work might be within the medium of selection, in my case O&W. Yes there are all the time exceptions, however don’t let these exceptions overshadow the rule.

Look & Feel – aka Signature

Probably probably the most troublesome and time-consuming element of figuring out your particular person fashion of images and probably the most enjoyable. Trial and error and numerous processing experiments in what ever photograph processing device you employ will allow you to refine the feel and appear of your fashion. Keep in thoughts the temper, and topic of your style and thru loads of superb tuning you’ll ultimately create the processing instruments needed to provide your pictures that distinctive fashion that may inform the viewer that is YOUR photograph. Establishing presets, and formulation will enable you to to pump out your styled pictures quicker after you have established the right tuning of your photographs. Don’t be afraid to make use of the packages at your disposal and don’t be discouraged when most of your photographs don’t end up the best way you envision. After all this can be a marathon not a dash, however if you get the appropriate components you’ll be able to transfer on to the third aspect.

unique picture style

“Surprised Farmer” captured by PictureSocial member Thomas Jeppesen


Ok, so you’ve gotten your genera, you could have your main medium and you’ve got refined your appear and feel to the purpose you now have a signature fashion that you’ll apply to your photographs. Now an important and maybe probably the most troublesome element to implement, consistency. It is tempting for anybody to repeatedly tweak and alter issues, however on this case it’s essential let go of this. Minor changes and tweaks will all the time be a part of the method so long as it doesn’t radically alter your feel and appear – in any other case you’ll have a totally totally different signature. Consistently apply your signature to your pictures. Think of this as “branding” from a advertising perspective – in case you are regularly altering your model, model message and model picture you’ll confuse and lose your buyer base (whether or not paying clients or just followers). This is why constant software of your signature fashion is essential to not solely your pictures however your model.


Some observations to think about in creating your signature fashion and an enduring portfolio. Processing software program is a superb boon and a horrible curse to images. Avoid in any respect value “gimmicky” tips to your images, whereas enjoyable to play with issues like selective colouring, horses leaping out of color frames into S&W again grounds and over Photoshopped pictures, these actually don’t stand the check of time. Read what a lot of the nice photographers of our period, and bygone eras, say relating to processing photographs – if it will possibly’t be carried out in lower than 5 minutes don’t do it. Then take a look at their work and you will notice that the majority are easy, with out bells and whistles and flashing lights however they’ve a singular signature all their very own.

photography style

Photo captured by PictureSocial member Trandinhkhiem

Whether you agree or not, defining your fashion is a vital function of your work. I look ahead to taking this journey with you, and I have numerous work forward in refining and defining my very own signature type however I know it is going to be an thrilling journey.

About the Author:
Adrian is a Canadian images fanatic and self customary road images dwelling in Guayaquil, Ecuador. He writes for  ecuadorunplugged dot com. Ecuador Unplugged is his homage to the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of what makes Ecuador a real paradise and his new residence one click on at a time.

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