Photography style – what it is and how you can find your own

Summary notes for this lesson

Finding your style is a process and instead of waiting for your personal style to magically appear, you can start this process now. 

The desire to change your style will be a natural step as you grow your skills, get older, go through life-changing events, get wiser, and change your taste in what you like and don’t like.

The process is about knowing yourself well:

  • your personality, 
  • what you love and what you don’t like, 
  • your quirkiness, 
  • your values, 
  • your strengths.

You mix your personality and your life experience with your techniques, your tools, your vision and your skills. Finding your personal style is not about photographing what is popular. 

75% of finding your unique style and voice is about digging within. The remaining 25 % are technical skills, inspiration and practice. 

It’s normal to have days when you don’t like your own work. If your personal style doesn’t come easily to you, don’t feel bad.

When you have developed a recognizable style, it will be a lot easier to get booked, get clients and get published. 

When you know your style, you will also work and act more confidently.

5 steps that help you find your personal photography style

Step 1 – Aim to find your photography niche

 Find something what you love to photograph and specialize in this.

Specializing in a specific area of photography will also make it a lot easier for you to develop your personal style. If you ever feel a strong urge to change your photography niche or style, go for it. Play with your photography, take your time to what it is that you love to photograph.

Step 2 – develop your observation skills

Study the work of other photographers. Find inspiration on Instagram, Pinterest, or in magazines. Study the colors, composition, camera angles … Ask yourself every time: what do you love about this photograph? What you don’t like about it? Editing style? Mood?

This will help you develop your style faster. 

Take a look at your old favourite images and study them. What makes them unique? What do you love about them? Are they in their portfolio? Why? Or why not? Is this something you would love to include in your portfolio in the future?

Step 3 – focus on play, not perfection 

Allow yourself to play, don’t look for perfection. Enjoy the process of creating something and looking for your own style. 

There is nothing wrong with you, just because you can not get the perfect shot. Don’t stress yourself too much, but give yourself time.  

Step 4 – make time for creative projects that are different than you usually do

This is the way to develop your style faster. When you give your brain a new task, it forces your mind to think in new ways. 

Spending a little time every day learning and practicing will ensure you uncover your photography style much faster than if you never take time to explore things outside your normal interest.

Step 5 – Practice your editing skills

Be careful to rely too much on presets and filters. The better you get at editing the less you need expensive filters to rescue your photos. 

Content author of this lesson: Christina Greve

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