While the main aim of your wedding photography is to capture you and your partner together, different photographers will have their own signature styles. There are a variety of wedding photography styles and you should choose one that resonates with you. From your wedding theme to the personality of the couple, these are factors to help you choose the right photographer for your wedding.
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Some photographers also do not stick to one distinct photography style. It is always good to browse through their portfolios online to decide whether they’ll be a good fit for you. We have compiled 10 stunning wedding photography styles for you to consider for your wedding photoshoot. From classical, fine art to vintage styles, it’s all about finding one that vibes with you.
Wedding Photography Styles
Classic / Traditional
Many wedding photo albums tend to include a lot of traditional shots as they help to capture classic shots like group shots of the couple with their families or bridesmaids and groomsmen. You can think of these photos as
This style typically requires the photographer to take charge in guiding each party to their positions to achieve the best photo. A lot of time is usually spent on posing for the work produced in this style. Couples can also express their own ideas to have creative poses that reflect their personality.
While these shots may not necessarily encapsulate the emotions felt by the couple, timeless and beautiful shots are created. They are also great formal photos to look back on to reminisce on the memories created with your loved ones.
Photographers experienced with this style will also be able to get stunning key moments like shots of cake cutting, wine toasting and the first kiss. These make classic photos that will stand the test of time.
Documentary / Photojournalism
As the name suggests, documentary photography style is more journalistic and story-based. Similar to how a photojournalist will document a news story, your photographer will be taking shots in a completely unobtrusive manner. The aim to document raw and uninterrupted emotions. This style could work best if you prefer to be more relaxed and have natural moments without having your photographer being overly dictative on the shots.
Documentary photography adds a degree of challenge to your photographer due to the spontaneous nature of such a style. It differs from couple to couple as everyone has their own distinct and unique personalities. Candid moments also happen in split seconds and it takes an observant and efficient photographer to capture the shot swiftly. It would also be good if the photographer is familiar with the environment or venue so that flattering angles and backgrounds can be tested out beforehand.
This style embraces the individuality and presents authentic memories that the couple can look back on fondly.
While it is similar to the documentary style, lifestyle photography is essentially photojournalism redefined. It remains candid but is also executed with some direction and styling. This is a perfect choice for couples who want their photos to have an approachable and relaxed feel but need some guidance from the photographer.
To achieve this style, the photographer will usually set the scene first and give the couple a scenario and get them to act accordingly. Different couples will also give rise to different images as they will react differently to the same scenarios. Hence, there’s still an element of fun and candidness in the photos. With a controlled environment, it can also be easier for the photographer to work with.
For instance, your photographer could tell you to walk forward while talking lovingly or dance against the backdrop. Each scenario is interpreted by different couples in their own distinct ways which could still make for photos personal to them. Compared to the documentary style, the photographer’s own distinct art direction will be relatively more present in the photos. Hence, it is advisable to browse through different lifestyle photographers to find one that aligns with your vision.
The main objective of natural photography is to use natural light when snapping photographs. Engaging a photographer whose forte lies in natural photography is great when you’re having outdoor photoshoots or wedding ceremonies and receptions. They will be proficient in making use of the golden hour and light present to create dazzling images.
Since the golden hour is brief whether it’s before sunrise or after sunset, it is crucial to be quick to avoid unflattering shadows when the sun is too harsh. Through clever manipulation and framing, it can also give rise to mesmerizing photos with a sense of illusion. For couples who are into the soft and warm aesthetics, this is the photography style for them.
Fine art wedding photography usually involves creative framing, lighting, composition and post-production techniques. Photographers who do artistic wedding photography like this are always anticipating moments to include fine art techniques to capture unique images. They are focused on bringing out the aesthetics instead of documenting moment by moment. They seek to exemplify the little details of the story with their direction.
Just like creating a piece of artwork or painting, such photography aims to produce a gorgeous image. Much thought goes into each photo to create dream-like images. However, it’s not commonly preferred to be the only approach used as there can be limited results. Hence, this would be great if you’re engaging a fine arts photographer as a secondary or tertiary shooter. Otherwise, you can get one photographer who can efficiently secure key shots of the day using other styles as well.
Fashion / Editorial
This style focuses on showing off bridal fashion and resembles commercial photography for fashion magazines. Photos seek to emphasise certain movements, looks and poses from the couple. Such a style is often carried out in a controlled light environment like in an indoor set specially designed. Even so, they can be captured outdoors under careful manipulation of the details.
Couples who are into trendy and glamorous poses from popular magazines may love this style where they get to be the ‘models’ themselves. It will be good for couples to browse through and pick out photos they want to emulate for the photographer to know what their preference is out of so many magazines.
However, this style is also more posed and directed which means the personality of each individual might not show as explicitly as other styles. They would usually be photographed alongside other styles.
Portraiture yields some of the most beautiful photos as it seeks to capture the raw emotions from the couple. These photos are usually close up images that focus on getting the facial expressions of the couple. Sincere emotions of joy and excitement are captured in the moment. These photos can either be staged or spontaneous.
Portrait wedding photography is also a great choice to take solo shots. Your photographer will usually direct you by giving cues for you to pose or look a certain way. You might be asked to gaze at each other fondly, look faraway or even look right at the camera. Although there may be a limit to your photographic results, this is a popular style as couples usually end up choosing portrait photos to frame up for display in their homes.
Vintage is back in trend! With a surge of popularity in photo filters that can make any photo look like they’re taken in the 80s or 90s, modern photographers are also shooting vintage wedding photography. This style is best suited for couples who want to evoke a sense of nostalgia and sentiment in their photos. If you’re having a rustic-themed wedding, these retro-looking photos would definitely enhance your theme more.
Props like retro cars, cassette tapes or items from the past that are less seen today can be utilised to give a vintage effect. There are also indoor sets and studios decorated with furniture to produce a rustic vibe. Otherwise, there are also many historical landmarks and old-fashioned buildings in Singapore you can visit to create the perfect vintage shot.
Illustrative wedding photography places emphasis on the composition, lighting and background. The couple will usually be asked to pose naturally against a picturesque backdrop. It is hence a mixture of photojournalistic and traditional styles. Your photographer may use artificial light, do more editing on the photo and add different textures and overlays. This style is often used for pre-wedding photoshoots where unique elements can be prepared beforehand.
Usually, photographers who shoot in this style would have a certain degree of skill in landscape photography and even aerial photography. Use of wide-angle lenses are also common. This is because the attention is not merely on the couple themselves. With added focus on the background, a captivating photo is one where both the couple and background can blend well together to evoke emotions.
Like the name suggests, the main purpose is to photograph the couple in places that are remote from homes and perhaps overseas. This would be perfect for couples who are having a destination wedding in other countries. Since you are already travelling abroad, it is a great chance to flaunt your love story in remarkable spots that you don’t get to visit often. From natural waterfalls to historical architectural buildings, there are plenty of locations to snap dazzling images. When you look back at your wedding album, it also allows you to recollect memories of not just your wedding but also your travelling experience.
Elements of landscape photography are also present as the background plays an important role too. Plenty of other styles like the documentary, artistic and editorial style are also evident in the destination photography style.
To fully encapsulate your wedding journey into a wedding album, your wedding photographer will rarely stick to just one photography style. Often, elements from other wedding photography styles will get mixed in. Having a variety of photos will be sure to evoke different emotions when you look back on your wedding down the road.