As a person becomes a photographer, during the creative and experimentation journey that he must face to find those characteristics that will make his art unique, he begins to develop and speak about photographic style . Has it ever happened to you that when you see a creation, regardless of the format or type of art, you can recognize who it belongs to or which group it belongs to? That is what we mean when we talk about “style”, those characteristics that make a creation of their own, original and recognizable by an artist .
In the world of photography we talk about photographic style, and it is over time that the photographer, with practice, experience, trial and error, manages to find these compositions , those angles, those shapes that, combined all together repeatedly, give their own, authentic and original style.
And when we talk about photographic style, we are not only referring to photographers, but also to brands and companies that establish a visual line for their style , not only in its design and communication and promotion strategies, but also in its photographs and audiovisual elements.
What is a style?
Before approaching the photographic style, we must know well what it means to have style , a word widely used in the creative field in general. A style is a group of features, characteristics and details that give something authenticity , it can be a historical period, a photographic, artistic or musical genre, a way of dressing, a way of doing something, etc.
A characteristic of styles is that they need each other to be defined, since the contrast between styles is what allows us to characterize and define them from each other as such. This is also the case with photography, the style that predominates in a brand or photographer, becomes one by contrasting with other styles and recognizing them in their contrast.
Another characteristic of styles is that these are created under patterns , where more than one element is involved, it takes two or more elements that present the same characteristics to consider it a style. Thus, styles are not formed individually, but collectively , where they present the same common features among all the elements of the group.
Thus, when talking about style, two fundamental functions are fulfilled, differentiation and recognition , these being the fundamental pillars to identify a style, and applied to the photographic field, we talk about detailed styles in the construction of images through a photographic camera.
What is the photographic style?
The photographic style is a particular and original way of taking photography . This is what makes the photography of a certain artist, something unique and recognizable, and which also allows them to differentiate themselves from other photographers and works, but at the same time manages to connect between their own works, something in common that consolidates that style.
The photographic style is not something that is achieved immediately , it is a process where little by little the artist’s style is defined. Starting with the technical learning of photography, using the camera and accessories, understanding the photographic composition, the play of light, lighting and contrasts, shape and background, until the creative approach in which the work is approached, the sum of all these Variables are shaping the style of the photographer that materializes over the years.
Photographic style or type of photography?
There is notable confusion when it comes to photo style and photo type. They are the same? Of course not. The types of photographs are more than anything a photographic classification according to the themes that a photo can encompass. A style of photography is more related to those details and characteristics that make the work of a photographer or brand an own and unique style, with its colors, shapes, types and elements that characterize the author.
In this sense, you can be a specialist photographer in a type of photography without your own style, as you can also cover different types of photography, but how you approach the composition of your works , you offer your own photographic style that makes you authentic and recognizable.
There are multiple types of photography that you can develop, each one with its themes, elements and details, but what will make you develop your own photographic style is the unique way you can approach your photographs and allow you to differentiate yourself and stand out from other photographers . If you are interested in knowing the different types of photography you can enter the link and see in which types to develop your style.
Is it necessary to have your own photographic style?
To take good photographs, and even make a living from it, it is not strictly necessary to have your own photography style . Sometimes many clients may ask you for particular ways of taking their photographs, and for this you will have to sacrifice your style and adapt to the demands and tastes of your clients.
However, if your goal is to become a world-renowned photographer, it is important that you develop your own style . It will be necessary for you to stand out above the rest and for this you must find those differentiating elements that make you unique as a visual art professional.
For those who are starting in this type of art, the important thing is to have solid foundations and deep knowledge about the type of photography and the photographic composition that you want to give to your works. Over time, practice will naturally help you develop an ideal photographic style. For the more experienced, it only remains to materialize that style and make it their own of the photographic identity.
How to find your photographic style?
In a world as wide as photography, finding your own photographic style is one of the most difficult and important tasks for any photographer. Can you imagine that someone sees a photo and knows how to recognize that it is yours without seeing your name?
Getting people to see your photos, know that they are yours, is one of the main objectives of the photographic style. Here are some tips that will help you develop your own style and achieve great recognition in the world of photography.
A very common mistake among beginners and aspiring great photographers is becoming obsessed with the style of photography they seek to develop. At the beginning of a photographer’s journey, the most important thing is to build the theoretical, technical and creative foundations of photography .
Elements such as lighting, composition, knowledge of the functionalities of your camera, and other elements, is much more important than thinking about style. The photographic style is a consequence that arises from having all the elements of photography mastered , which together will give you the first indications to establish your own style as a professional photographer.
Take your time
Unfortunately there is no exact formula or definite time in which you can become the best photographer in the world, much less be recognized overnight. This will depend on your work, it will be what you will speak of yourself and if it is relevant or of value to people.
Identify your likes and abilities
You must be clear about what you like about photography and what your strengths and weaknesses are. This way you can focus on what you really do well and like, don’t waste time trying something you’re not good at or just don’t like.
In relation to the previous point you will only be able to recognize your strengths, weaknesses and tastes if you put it into practice . Even if you already have a defined style, you need to practice it so that you can improve your style, technique and skills as a photographer. Practice makes perfect!
Choose a type of photography that you are passionate about
As you surely know, there are thousands of types of photographs and some are better paid economically, have greater popularity or are simply more widely recognized. That this does not influence the type of photography you want to dedicate yourself to or the style you will develop, a basic principle of photography is to do it because you really love it .
Create something unique and different
In a world so competitive and full of photographers it is necessary that you stand out from the rest, not only replicate the work of recognized photographers that you admire or like, because in this way rest assured that people will never know about your work. Create something unique that convinces people and arouses their interest , make them fall in love with your photography.
Choose a technique and set your style
Possibly at first you need to do trial and error on your photos, which is completely acceptable but do not get stuck in it, make a decision and carry it out. If every time you take a photograph you start to have a different style or with color ranges that are not similar, forget about people starting to recognize your work. Create a stable style with which people begin to identify and relate to you , something with which it is not necessary to see your name so that they know that it is your job.
As we saw at the beginning, to develop a style requires a pattern of characteristics and details repeated in several works, which together give rise to the style that you seek to develop. Make your photos have coherence, make it look like they are from the same photographer and not the opposite!
In conclusion, not only photographic theory is enough, develop your own photographic style is extremely important to be successful in a world as competitive as photography, and you can only develop it with constant practice and discipline.