The most popular photography genres(3)


The result of multiple tries to take a picture of the stars can be awful. Shots appear totally dark, and some overexposed objects in the foreground ruin the whole view. This bitter experience makes people forget about astrophotography forever. But the reality is not that cruel – anyone can become a skillful astrophotographer. All you need is a helpful guide, adequate gear, and post-processing software. Any camera can become an astrophotography tool in your hands. Read this astrophotography overview that describes basic types of astrophotography, useful tips and techniques, the best cameras and equipment for shooting, and exciting ideas for post-processing.

There’s also a whole genre of Astro landscape photography with the Milky Way and a slice of Earth in the foreground. Although it’s tricky to take Astro landscape photos, you can learn some tips on how to photograph the Milky Way.

Scientific photography

Scientific photography is a broad category that spans everything from extreme magnification microscope photographs to shots of SpaceX rockets. Some human-made objects sneak their way into this genre as well: photos of particle accelerators and rocket launches regularly go viral. Among other types of photography, this one hopefully will continue to spread and grab more attention in the future as it has the power to show us entirely new perspectives and change the way we look at the world.

Sports photography

Another notable photography style is sports photography, which spans photographing international events like the Olympics to local amateur photography competitions in the most remote areas of the world. Even a parent snapping their child playing sports is part of this genre. What do you need to start shooting action shots? You need to acquire flawless autofocus skills, the right timing, and often a breakneck shutter speed.

Still life photography

Still life photography is a vibrant and profitable genre where a photographer creates a picture with almost full control over lighting, feel, and composition. This is a great way to unlock your creativity and make some money through stock photography or by selling art prints on a variety of websites. Another benefit of still life photography is that you don’t need a studio or a lot of space. All you need is a table and natural light. If you end up getting serious about it, you can get a continuous light like an LED panel.

Architecture photography

Architectural images complete our list of the most popular photography styles. This type of photography requires a specific and at times expensive set of tools and demands a discerning eye. When photographing buildings, it’s critical to capture every detail that the architect has laid out.

Drone photography

Not that long ago, drone photography was difficult to access. It was hard even to imagine how the area around us looked from a bird’s-eye view. We could only see Earth via Google Maps or through the plane window during take-off. Then the first drones came, which were a far stretch for most budgets. Today, you can buy a good quality drone for half the price of a smartphone.

As drone fever is rapidly extending all over the globe, landscape and travel photography are the most substantially affected. But it’s almost impossible to find a genre where you can’t use drones. If you follow this trend or are thinking about it, make sure you know the rules for beginners. Read this guide to get off to a good start with drone photography.

Social and environmental photography

It’s time to generate awareness, and photographers worldwide are revealing humanity’s problems. Over the last decade, social and environmental consciousness has dramatically increased, and social media platforms are the best place to reveal these issues. Many famous photographers have become active ambassadors of NGOs (nongovernmental organizations) and are using their images to foster change.

Candid photography

In a time of artificially composed and over-processed images, people are looking for authenticity. Fashion photographs, unreal postures, and overly Photoshopped portraits are no longer something to admire. Viewers are searching for natural emotions, smiles, and gestures. This is where candid photography comes into play.

Photographers get out of the studio and perform photo shoots outdoors. This allows them to capture less staged scenes in which people can interact in everyday situations. Although artificial light is still very much in use, the aim is to achieve the look of natural lighting. As for weddings, many newlyweds prefer documentary wedding photographers to traditional ones to get more unique and spontaneous snaps.

Animal photography

Wildlife and pets have earned a spot in our hearts and photography portfolios. Many outdoor photographers have noticed that four-legged friends make us thrilled and emotional. Couples are including cats and dogs in their wedding photoshoots. Meanwhile, parents want portraits of their children with bunnies, chicks, and other baby animals. To keep pace with this photography trend, brush up on your pet photography skills and get ready for a lot of adorable content on social media. Check out the awe-inspiring work by world-renowned photographer and Skylum partner Kevin Dooley.

Vertical photography

In 2019, almost three-quarters of total internet traffic comes from smartphone users. This means that most viewers will see your photos on a vertical screen. That’s why many photographers are adopting vertical photos as their default format. But should you be following their steps? Yes, as long as your target audience is mobile users.

Vertical pictures are more comfortable to view on mobile devices and are usually displayed at a larger scale. However, it’s crucial to remember that the orientation of the frame affects the composition. Focus on what you want each photo to elicit and the best way to capture it. After all, you can always crop your photos to adjust them to social media formats.

Outdoor photography

Outdoor photography is here to stay, at least for another year. Continuing the momentum of 2018, eye-catching landscapes in seemingly remote locations will continue to occupy social media for months to come. The hugeness of this trend leaves room for may subtrends. For instance, in the past, we’ve seen many images taken with smartphones or views from the open back door of vans flood social media.

In 2019, one of the chief subtrends within outdoor photography will be product photography. This will concern both online and offline advertising. Apparel, accessories, photography equipment, transportation, and real estate are likely to be the key topics covered by these photographs.

Product photography

Another branch of commercial photography is product photography, where you’re typically shooting in a studio with careful lighting to accentuate the product (though sometimes outdoors or on location). As with commercial portraiture, a product photographer’s goal is to match the vision of the company. An outdoor brand will have different needs from a high-end lifestyle brand, even if both sell the same type of product, such as clothing or backpacks.

Wrapping it up

Trends come and go, and in the end, all you can offer is your personal style. You should keep an eye on photography trends, but we advise you not to jump blindly into them. Use this list of different types of photography to learn new styles, get inspired, and unlock your potential.


The most popular photography genres(1)

The most popular photography genres(2)

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