Photography has been a long-available art for centuries, bringing about consistent innovation and invention. There are many sub-genres in photography with their various unique features and objective.
The uniqueness of the individual sub-genres of photography also necessitates the need for different tools. This article will explore the different types of photography in detail.
1. Portrait photography
Portrait Photographers are skilled in taking pictures of individuals or groups of people. Lighting, background, and stance all play a role in a portrait's ability to portray the subject's character in a single image, making portraiture a particularly difficult photographic sub-genre.
Portrait photography also has varieties which include self-portraits, silhouettes, and head-shots.
High-key, well-lit portraits are the norm, and their lighting is crucial to achieving that effect. Alternative sources of illumination are abundant.
To focus solely on the topic at hand, you should choose a fast medium telephoto lens with manual focus.
In portrait photography, if you're not shooting in a studio you can easily compensate for a messy background by leveraging the bokeh effect of your lens.
However, backdrop blur is not desirable for environmental portraits, which are supposed to depict the subject in their environment.
2. Fine art photography
Photographic fine art is made by a visual artist who uses the medium to convey a message or evoke a feeling via the use of a specific set of images.
The goal of the photograph is to realize the artist's idea by making the audience feel a certain way. These pictures are treated like paintings and hung on walls in frames.
There are occasions when reportage and fashion photography blend with fine art photography.
Fine art photography aims to capture the artist's subjective intent behind the image, whereas representational photography aims to capture the subject matter or scene as it really is.
3. Fashion Photography
This is an old form of photography, it went far back to the 1800s and is the art of shooting fashion models with the main purpose of using it for editorial or other use.
Photographs of fashion can be taken in a studio, on location in an exotic setting, or in a setting that is complementary to the apparel or lives on the catwalk during a fashion show.
In most cases, high-quality gear and lighting are necessities for fashion photo shoots.
It is common for hair and makeup specialists to be engaged as well. Fashion photographers make models available to clearly showcase what they are wearing or other accessories with them.
A wide variety of subjects can be photographed for use in fashion magazines, from haute couture, which concentrates on the most recent trends and designs conceived by renowned designers, to models posing for department store catalogs.
4. Still-Life Photography
Photography known as "still life" focuses on inanimate subjects. A single object or a collection of objects can serve as the subject of a still-life photograph, just as this is possible in traditional still-life paintings.
The entities snapped in this photograph can be connected or not related to each other. The relationship between fine art photography and still-life photography is quite strong.
They share a common goal of having a stunning appearance.
The photographer's goal is to create something spectacular out of something seemingly commonplace. This is an investigation into the relationships between color, form, and significance.
5. Architectural Photography
This is the type of photography with the main purpose of usage in the building’s interior and exterior.
These photographs have a tendency to be quite exact renderings of the construction, and they are typically captured in a manner that is not only visually appealing but also accurate.
Majorly, daylight features are adopted in architectural photography for the exterior part of a building and the other landscaping elements.
These can also be taken at night utilizing natural lighting such as moonlight, lights from adjacent streets, or landscape lighting.
Because of the typically enormous scale of the structures involved, perspective control is an essential component of this specialized field.
To have efficient massive structure images for architecture photography, tilt-shift lens usage, post-processing, and large-format view cameras are vital.
6. Documentary Photography
Documentary photography has to do with capturing a single moment, to make a point known.
Sometimes the scene being depicted can evoke such strong feelings in the viewer and is caught in such a way that it becomes art in and of itself.
These images provide some insight into previously obscure happenings all throughout the globe. However, there are many lovers of documentary photography that adore the effective part of documentary photography.
Documentary photography is not limited to professional photographers; amateur or artistic photographers are just as capable of capturing meaningful moments in time.
The academic community is home to another enthusiastic audience for this branch of photography.
7. Sports photography
Sports photography is the practice of taking photographs of sporting events. In the world of professional sports, it is always categorized as a subgenre of photojournalism.
Photographers that specialize in sports may work for publications like newspapers and magazines or produce images for commercial clients.
The sub-genre of photography known as "vernacular"—whose practitioners focus on documenting ordinary life—often includes amateur sports photographers.
Shutter speed is especially important for capturing in-game action because of how quickly the action occurs in most sports. Choosing a prime location is crucial for any successful photo shoot.
What camera body and lens will work best depends heavily on the sort of sport being photographed.
Golf, boxing, cycling, and track & field are all examples of individual sports where a shallow depth of field can capture the intensity of the competitors.
8. Landscape Photography
Travel enthusiasts are likely to have a large collection of landscape photographs. Landscape photography has been misappropriated to only be achievable with horizontal orientation, whereas not.
When out in the great outdoors, many photographers find that shooting vertically allows them to better capture the tall trees, mountains, and other scenery they encounter.
It's unlikely for landscape photographers to come up with a flaw in photography.
Drones of this period also provide more room for innovation. Such advancements in technology have made it much simpler to shoot landscapes from above, adding a sense of scale to our photographs.
You should invest in a better camera instead of relying on your phone or a compact digital camera if you want professional-quality photos.
Choose the perfect lenses and invest in quality equipment for landscape photography.
9. Wedding Photography
Although the wedding is a constant event with its activities, there are many ways it can be photographed.
You may, for instance, follow the commercial model and wear the same design to every wedding you photograph.
You might also take traditional wedding photos by asking guests to pose for you. Couple albums, wedding ring close-ups, trash-the-dress picture sessions, and portraits are also popular.
Photographing weddings requires quick thinking, originality, and familiarity with a wide range of photographic techniques.
Wedding photography demands an extensive collection of tools and props due to its wide range of possible applications. You'll require a variety of lenses, as well as filters, tripods, and flashes.
Likewise, the need to make changes to the photography setup will arise, this necessitates the need for a second camera as a standby support.
10. Wildlife Photography
There are casual bird watchers who take pictures of wildlife, and then there are the serious photographers who will cheerfully spend hours in hiding to capture the ideal snap.
The issue about nature is that you can never predict when the right moment will be, and animals only act normally when they do not perceive any danger, thus it is to be expected that they will remain hidden for extended periods of time.
In taking a short drive or stroll to a nearby outdoor scene, wildlife photography won’t be time-consuming.
While photographing these animals, a fast shutter speed is essential for freezing the motion and preventing motion blur from camera shake.
Due to the scarcity of wildlife photographers, quality pictures are rare and expensive. Wildlife photography styles are always fascinating and eye-calling.
11. Pet Photography
Pet photography, a subgenre of family photography, entails taking pictures of people with their pets, whether they have four legs or two.
Pets including birds, cats, dogs, horses, rabbits, hamsters, and fish can all be pictured in portrait style for people to enjoy the sighting.
While trying to acquire a photo of an animal pet, you may need to use incentives like treats, props, and other items.
Photographing dogs can be done in a variety of camera settings, from candid images of several pets chasing each other on a beach or in a park to more formal planned shots of pets in their natural world, such as in a comfortable chair or with their favorite toys or humans.
To capture the action, you'll need to tweak your camera's settings and potentially invest in a prime lens with a fixed focal length and a wide aperture.
12. Aerial Photography
One could argue that aerial photography already belongs in the landscape photography subgenre.
Still, the typical image of a landscape is one shot from the ground up, with a more intimate perspective.
Balloons or aircraft or helicopters were once the only ways to get a bird's-eye view of a location.
But, now that drone technology has matured, anyone with the means to do so can snap breathtaking aerial images in places where doing so is legal.
Several scientific and practical endeavors necessitate the monitoring of expansive areas, and aerial photography serves this goal admirably. Aerial photography requires access to some sort of flying machine like a chopper, plane, or drone.
Although getting some air machines is difficult for most people, many photographers have taken advantage of the latest developments in drone technology to take aerial photographs.
13. Commercial Photography
Commercial photography is for profit-oriented activities like advertisement or marketing. Commercial Photographers capture images of the goods for use in advertising mediums such as menus, booklets, brochures, and more.
Models or employees might be used to stage photos of the finished product. Commercial photography can include anything from food photography to fashion photography to product photography.
Like with many other subgenres, this one often makes use of headshots. To guarantee a commissioned photographer can produce what their client requires, they should confirm the sort and amount of photos, as well as determine which shots are essential versus which are merely desirable.
14. Street photography
Street photography is fun because photographers can exercise their artistic freedom by going wherever they like with their cameras.
Street photography involves capturing the human experience at any time of day or night. It records occurrences as they happen without attempting to control them or give them some sort of meaning.
The best aspect about taking pictures on the street is that you may experiment with various camera models and camera settings.
Common elements include people selling or eating food from the streets, kids, graffiti art, and lots of concrete; the images are often monochromatic.
They need not have been shot on city streets, so long as they depict or emphasize the world as it really is.
Many street photographers find success when their work is published in print and online media. Unfortunately, reliable earnings aren't always assured.
Instead of only shooting for certain assignments, street photographers often take pictures whenever and wherever they like.
15. Abstract Photography
It's not easy to pin down the precise nature of abstract photography, which often goes by other names like conceptual, concrete, and experimental.
Without explicitly depicting the object or location being photographed, abstract images typically evoke an emotional response through the use of color, light, shadow, texture, shape, or form.
Photographs belonging to this category are typically created by isolating a particular object or natural world in such a way that removes contextual details, either by framing the shot in a creative way or by image editing after the fact, that the viewer is left with an impression that the object has no obvious association.
16. Real Estate Photography
The use of professional photography is an extremely important step in the home buying and leasing processes.
Photographers working in the real estate industry are tasked with ensuring that the properties they capture are worthy of being used as advertisement pieces.
These will be featured on the agent's websites as well as in their respective directories. And they want customers to make purchases.
To run a successful real estate business, real estate photographers need a wide range of photographic skills for efficiency. Real estate photographers need to get a shot that encompasses the entire space.
In addition to this, you are required to make the box room appear to be a honeymoon suite. There is potential for financial gain if you possess such abilities.
17. Food photography
Commercial, editorial, and still-life photography all share certain similarities with food photography, a subgenre in which food is the primary focus of the photographs.
This category includes any film that features food in some way, whether it is raw materials, cooking scenes, or finished dishes on plates.
Images from this genre are used for advertisements in periodicals or food blogs. The images can also be found on product packaging, menus, and even in cookbooks.
This photography type is a popular sub-genre of photography that requires many efforts from the photographer, art directors, and food stylist. Shots are typically taken from above or at a 45-degree angle.
Selective focus, tilting plates, and extreme close-ups are just a few of the novel techniques that have become popular in recent years to highlight a single component or the finished product on a plate.
18. Underwater Photography
When taken at depth, photographs of the ocean floor provide a glimpse into a realm that most of us will never visit.
Discover a whole new universe with the help of diving gear and underwater cameras. Oftentimes, the outcomes are visually spectacular and compelling. The results of underwater photography can be breathtaking.
Even the altered physics and the slower pace of existence provide an air of mystery and wonder to this place.
Taking pictures underwater requires a unique set of abilities and specialized gear. It's a different kind of photography, but it is worth trying if you like the ocean.
If you plan on doing any shooting underwater, you will need to make some changes to the camera lens. This is required because water reduces the camera lens's field of view by about a quarter to a third.
Also, a good camera is needed for underwater photography. This is because underwater images will be affected by factors such as water quality, the presence of waves, the presence of dangerous marine life, and other underwater activities.
19. Family Photography
Family photography is one of the earliest types of photography. People didn't have easy access to digital photography or mobile devices until quite recently.
In its place, they hired a professional photographer to capture the family's significant moments. Taking annual family portraits at a professional studio became a tradition.
The photography industry has grown to include portraits of families. This piece successfully combines commercial appeal with artistic merit.
Owning a studio and having the family pose in front of a green screen is only the beginning.
Finding the ideal family poses for any setting and personality, dealing with youngsters, and continuing to upskill and come up with new ideas are all part of being a successful family photographer.
Finding your own voice and style, experimenting with different lenses, and being highly imaginative are all necessary for this form of photography.
20. Macro Photography
Macro photography, often known as photomacrography or just macrography, involves taking extremely close-up pictures of normally tiny objects.
Common motifs in this style include insects and flora or flowers. Apart from abstract patterns and textures, it can also contain close-ups of food, water droplets, commonplace items like fabrics or feathers, toys, eyes, jewels, and more.
Adjusting the shot's depth of field and lighting is essential for successful macro photography, which requires specialist lenses to capture a correct reproduction ratio of the subject matter.
Lenses can be extended with extension tubes to get that perfect close-up shot.
The technique known as photomicrography can be used to acquire photos with a digital microscope when the image reproduction ratio of the shot is more than 10:1.
21. Event Photography
Event photography is a popular and diverse field that consists of concerts, birthday parties, business meetings, and weddings.
This type of photography often requires a wide range of skills, as you may be asked to capture everything from guests enjoying themselves to the event's decor and culinary offerings.
A successful portfolio in this genre should demonstrate the wedding photographers ability to convey a story via their images, rather than merely document the event being photographed.
It will require lots of practice, especially in dealing with people and reporting on a certain kind of event. To capture everything on your "shot list" and avoid missing any crucial moments, you'll also need a wide selection of lenses.
Which type of photography is best?
In the midst of the various types of photography, portraiture is consistently ranked among the most popular. It embodies wedding and engagement photos, family photos, fashion photos, and so on.
Is photography easy to learn?
Yes, photography is an easy activity to learn. You only need to know the basics of photography which is not hard to acquire.
Do I need to go to school to become a photographer?
Education in the arts, business, or marketing will certainly appear good on a résumé. But, a university degree isn't necessary to succeed in any sub-field of photography.
Successful investors know that seizing opportunities and being open to learning on the fly are keys to building a solid portfolio.
The payoff in the form of a successful professional is well worth the effort. However, developing professional abilities takes time and effort.
Can I Learn Photography Without Spending a Fortune?
For starters, you can get by without even purchasing a specialized or high-priced camera. Consider making advantage of the camera on your mobile device.
Snap some pictures of whatever you like and compare them to the real-life settings you filmed.
A photography career begins with the acquisition of a camera. The next step is to choose a course of action. There are various types of photography to choose from, as listed in this content.
All the many kinds of photography shouldn't scare you. You're free to mix, and match genres and test out as many photography genres as you like.