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Types of Photography

Kashmira Lad Feb 18, 2020
The various types of photography are a clear indication of why this much-loved art form has reached epic proportions in terms of popularity; either as a hobby or as a profession. And, some of these photography styles definitely enjoy a prominent position in the creative industry.
A photograph is not just a representation of what one sees in reality. It often represents something that is not seen by an ordinary observer.
A photograph is definitely worth a thousand words, and it has the power to convey a whole new meaning of a particular situation. While photography may be a hobby to some, this art form is a complete profession to many, as it offers various avenues to aspiring photographers.

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The world's most spectacular photographs need not require the most expensive equipment. A stunning photograph would require the expertise of a skillful eye that is trained to capture moments in the best way possible.
Although color photography gained popularity with time, photographers are aware about the full potential of black and white pictures as well. So, whether it's the passion for fashion or nature, photographers all over the world are having a delightful time clicking away!
People with an inclination towards photography can check out some of the types of photography that also make fantastic career options.

Fashion Photography

This genre is one of the most lucrative kind. Photographs are one of the most effective ways of communication in the world of fashion. Here, photography is used to bring attention to the clothes and the accessories. Models are exclusively selected to showcase products in the best way possible.
Fashion photographers today, create the particular look either in a natural environment or one that is created in the studio. Often, these fashionable photographs find their way in leading fashion magazines. These magazines cater to the niche crowd that loves to know the best in clothing and other fashion accessories.

Glamor Photography

Glamor photography is also about fashionable visuals, however, with a difference. Glamor photography highlights the model in a different light rather than laying emphasis on the clothing or accessories. Often, nude images are also a part of glamor photography. These can be found on the covers of magazines like 'Playboy'.

Advertising Photography

Advertising photography is all about creating the right environment to highlight the product to be advertised, in the best way possible.
The photographers generally come up with ideas or visuals. At times, design houses also brief photographers about the concept required, in order to obtain specific results. These photographs are always planned in coordination with the advertising firm.

Still Life Photography

Still life photography is all about capturing objects on camera that are deliberately grouped together to create a particular composition.
This form of art requires the photographer to have an excellent sense of composition and lighting. A photographer in this case, can create different textures and use objects that add interest to an otherwise normal composition.

Wedding Photography

Wedding photography is a specialized field of this art form, which is dedicated to snapping the most memorable moments in various creative ways. A photographer can take his/her own approach towards this subject. While some prefer the traditional 'posed' ways, there are others who base their photographs purely on the actual moment.
Photographers can also make wedding pictures fashionable with particular themes if agreeable with the client. There are many cases where such glamorous wedding photographs are captured specially in the studio. Today, many people are willing to explore new ideas, which opens up many new, creative avenues for experts in wedding photography.

Fine Art Photography

Fine art photography is all about visuals that resemble a work of art. These are highly creative images that have an abstract appeal.
Therefore, these photographs can be equivalent to an artist's expression on canvas. This genre of photography is not restricted for commercial purposes, but could be used for creative pursuits as well. A fine art photographer should have the ability to look beyond the obvious settings.

Nature Photography

Nature photographers are very much sought after by media houses. The works of these creative geniuses can be seen in magazines like 'National Geographic'. Nature photography encompasses various other types of photography, such as:

Landscape Photography

These photographs mainly highlight the natural beauty of any place. It includes areas of wilderness, deserts, mountains, or even waterfalls.

Wildlife Photography

Photographers that specialize in wildlife photography spend many hours in the wilderness to capture some of the most amazing shots of animals against a natural backdrop. A photographer in this case, would need to be an ardent animal lover and know his way around in the wild.

Underwater Photography

Underwater photography is an interesting art form that explores a whole new world beneath the deep blue seas. It's an extremely challenging task because a photographer should know all about swimming and scuba diving to capture the best images while clicking pictures in the blue waters!

Cloudscape Photography

This style of photography is completely dedicated to capturing various images of cloud formations. Black and white photography in particular can be creatively used in this branch of photography.

Seascape Photography

Capturing nature in her many moods would be interesting for all lovers of the environment. A photographer who is dedicated to seascape photography should always lie in wait for the beauty of the sea to unfold. Here, the concentration is mainly on capturing various moods of the ocean, at different times of the day, or even in different seasons!

Travel Photography

Travel photography involves capturing images of a particular landscape or even people from different countries. A photographer captures various traditions and customs of different places.

Architectural Photography

Architectural photography, as the name suggests, is all about capturing images of different styles of architecture in different lights. This type of photography would require the photographer to be an expert in the technical as well as the visual department.

Portrait Photography

Portrait photography is all about capturing the mood of a person, with an emphasis on the face and expression of a person.
This style of photography need not only be about professional models, it can encompass any kind of a person. Family portrait photographs are quite popular today. There are many creative ways a photographer can use to make a portrait photograph look stunning!


Photojournalism is all about telling a story about a particular event or incident through a single photograph. This genre of photography is used mainly by publications to represent the latest news.
In this case, the photographer's visuals and the writer's story should complement each other. For example, if a writer is making a specific mention of a particular location in the story, the photographer can find innovative ways to capture the same on camera.
Photojournalism can be further classified into:

Documentary Photography

Here, the photographer has to present an image that best represents the incident being spoken of, in true form. In this case, press photographers usually submit their images to the concerned publication. However, recently, press photographers from all over the world have started displaying their works at exhibitions as well.

Street Photography

This is all about capturing candid images of public places or even people in their natural element.
A photographer, in this case, requires the skill to mingle with people and capture the best frames, without being conscious of people around. Henri Cartier-Bresson used the technique of wrapping the camera inside his handkerchief.
Of course, one also has to consider the legal issues, as there are many places where this type of photography is prohibited for security reasons.

Celebrity Photography

Celebrity photography is all about capturing celebrities from various fields. Various media houses use such photographs - from publications (magazines, newspapers) to the online media. In this case, there are various ways of approaching the subject.
In the first instance, celebrities are shot with meticulous planning in a studio or at an outdoor location, where the styling is well planned for; this includes the clothes, make up, and the accessories. Apart from this, photographers who specialize in celebrity photography also need to capture them at various functions or press conferences.
Whereas, there is a third type of celebrity photography known as the paparazzi. This is about capturing celebrities on camera without their consent. These photographs are exclusive and often fetch a premium price for all photographers.

Sports Photography

This genre of photography is dedicated completely to capturing the best images in action, for any kind of sport.
A photographer, in this case, should have the knack to capture stunning images on camera with great speed. There are many photographers who have dedicated themselves completely to this segment. These photographs are mainly used by publishing houses and other branches of media.

Nude Photography

Nude photography is about the depiction of the human body in the nude form. These photographs are not meant for eroticism, but purely for the study of the human body. Here, the face is not always the focal point, and the compositions are stylized with experimentation in terms of light and backdrops.

War Photography

War photography is about capturing photographs that depict the situations at war in terms of the people or the particular instance. Here, the photographers are always at risk and often the target of the warring groups.

Candid Photography

Henri Cartier-Bresson is one of the first names that crops up in one's mind when it comes to candid photography. This can be said to be one of the purest forms of photography, which does not include any staged situations. Candid photography is all about being spontaneous!

Fire Photography

This form of photography would require the photographer to be equipped with protective clothing. The photographer, in this case, clicks photographs of firefighting operations. This type of photography is useful for investigations.

Forensic Photography

Also known as crime scene photography, here, the job of the photographer is mainly to capture images for an accurate representation of the scene of crime. In these cases, a photographer will have to cover all the possible angles of the particular scene for investigation purposes. These images could be about any scene of crime or even accidents.

Secret Photography

Here, it is the primary aim of the photographer to capture images of people without their knowledge. Professional photographers mainly use this type of photography for investigative purposes, and unethical publication of the same can result in various legal issues. Here, the photographer can also conceal himself/herself from the concerned party, including the camera being used.

Macro Photography

This style of photography is completely about close-up images of a specific subject. This style is used particularly to capture details of organisms or nature that may not be visible to the naked eye.

Aerial Photography

A photographer who is into aerial photography needs to be an expert at capturing images from a high elevation.
There are various techniques used to obtain these images; a photographer can click these images from a helicopter or an aircraft, and more recently, kites are also being used, wherein the camera is attached to the kite to click photographs when the kite is in the air.

Headshot Photography

This type of photography focuses mainly on the person's face (mug shots), but is different from portrait photography. The images, in this case, are plainer in nature as the client would need to use these images purely for work purposes.

Food Photography

Food photography is mainly in demand due to the rising needs from the advertising industry and publishing houses. It is the photographer's skill that is required to make the food item look very interesting and appealing to the viewer.


Astrophotography focuses completely on capturing images from space. This could range from the planets to the stars or any other interesting formations. It is very difficult to capture a clear image of any incident in the starry skies owing to many technical problems a photographer may face.
However, with the advent of new technology in this field, many innovative options are being added to make this type of photography easier for avid photographers dedicated to this field.

Child Photography

In this case, the photographer should definitely have a knack to handle children to capture their best moods and moments! These types of photographs are used for advertising purposes or even for personal reasons.

Black and White Photography

With the advent of color photography, black and white photography would have been passé. However, this is a medium that offers vast options for photographers.
The timeless appeal of black and white photography can be used for any topic. Photographers, in this case, would need to use lighting and textures, apart from composition, and the latest techniques to be rewarded with beautiful visuals.

Digital Photography

Digital photography is all about photographers opting for the digital cameras over the traditional ways, to click images that are faster to transmit. However, there are many photographers who still prefer to use film to digital cameras for better clarity and representation of light and dark.

Night Photography

Photographers in this case completely specialize in night scenes. Due to the problem of minimum light, new techniques are being incorporated. A photographer can use artificial light or even a long exposure to capture clear and precise images.
These various types of photography clearly give an indication of the blossoming of this art form. Technology has made it possible to go beyond the obvious frames. Today, photography is all about the combination of the expertise of the photographer as well as techniques.
But in the true sense, an excellent photographer would only need creativity and strong powers of observation to be able to capture visuals that are truly beyond the ordinary.