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Choosing Your Wedding Photographer - Wedding Photography Styles Explained

Choosing Your Wedding Photographer - Photography Styles Explained

You have selected your date, booked your venue and began shopping for dresses. Now you're looking for a wedding photographer. There are a lot of styles of photography out there, and while people the industry might know these styles really well they be confusing for couples. Remember too that not only do you think you're picking a style of photography, but various kinds of wedding photography can make different demands on the time on your big day.

Picking the style of photography you desire at your wedding comes from three things. What design of images you want, how much time you want to spend with a photographer on the wedding day, and most importantly coming from all your own personality and comfort in front of the camera.
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There are plenty of different photography buzzwords out there. Vintage, editorial, artistic or contemporary are just a few. Perhaps more confusingly they are used by different photographers in different ways. Ultimately it is approximately couples to ask a lot of questions and do a good amount of research before selecting a photographer, and to rely on seeing full pair of photos from completed weddings Don't rely on the best five to six shots from several weddings to make a choice.

Wedding photography styles really are a compromise between producing fantastic work and keeping to a timetable. A photographer might produce brilliant photos, in case he takes too long to create them you probably won't benefit from the experience.

Traditional (or Posed) Wedding Photography

A lot of people think of traditional photography as endless stuffy group photos where everyone looks stiff like a board. Worse still, the various collections of people appear to go on forever. I do think there is a fashion being down on traditional wedding photography, but the actual working framework continues to be same for most wedding photographers. The photographs may be more stylish however the actual experience on the day for the bride and groom is quite similar.

There is always a trade off between the type of work a photographer does as well as the time it takes to shoot it. More formal posed photographs will require longer to set up and get. Any photographer who produces artistic posed work need a certain amount of time to produce his work best. It is important that you find out the time he will need, and work out how it will fit into your mood. There are photographers who spend a couple of hours on formal shots. You should always be happy with giving over that quantity of time on your wedding day. If you are not that comfortable before the camera you may find such a photography more difficult. A fantastic photographer should be able to allow you to and put you at the ease but for many people it can still seem a bit daunting.

Reportage Wedding Photography (Wedding Photojournalism)

If traditional is centered on posed photographs, then reportage photography is the opposite. It utilizes capturing moments while they happen, and is a lot more like a fly on the wall documentary. This form of photography means that the photographer spends most of his time in the history, and so has become increasingly popular with couples. Weddings may also be increasingly less formal than they used to be. Documentary photography demands a different skill set from traditional wedding photography so you have to make sure that your photographer has got the correct photographic background can show you full weddings to back this up. Wedding photojournalism is a bit more about a complete set of pictures from the whole day when compared to a set of a dozen highlights. You'll find photographers out there who will jump on the latest bandwagon to gain business, but still make use of the same old style they have always. Wedding photojournalism is all about anticipation and being in the right place at the correct time. It is not about closely directing people, in order that it puts many traditional wedding photographers outside of their experience. There are some less ethical photographers who'll use the latest buzzwords to improve their search engine presence, but still shoot the same tired old pictures.

Should you be reticent about having your photo taken, wedding photojournalism may perhaps be your best choice. The photography happens without you truly realizing and you'll look your natural best.

Although these two approaches might appear polar opposites, in reality most wedding photographers will give you a blend of these two styles. There are limited wedding photojournalists who don't shoot at the very least some formal photographs and traditional wedding photographers will shoot informal pictures as well. Find out what proportion of each and every a photographer would rather shoot, and better still question them what they like to shoot the most - chances are this is exactly what they are best at.

Vintage Wedding Photography

Vintage wedding photography is a style that has been being received by vogue recently, but also in lots of ways its a tough one one to quantify. Vintage can often mean anything from using old film cameras during some of the wedding to just an alternative approach to post production to make 'vintage' looking digital files. There are some great photographers available, but bear in mind that if you will get files that are heavily edited in a certain style, you run the risk of your photos looking rather dated a few years later. If I was getting a vintage style photographer, I personally would want at least some of the wedding shot on film, I'm not a huge fan of faking things. Remember ask questions, see examples making an informed decision.

Editorial Photography

This wedding genre is inspired through the fashion editorials of glossy magazines, at it's a good idea it can produce fantastic high-end images. To produce this successfully on a special day the photographer has to be highly organised, and could possibly need an assistant to help set up some of the shots beforehand, although that would depend on his or her style. Shop around to make sure that the time requirements just for this type of shoot participate in your plans. If you really like this type of photography try not to want to devote too much time to it on your big day, consider booking a separate photo session following the wedding. Often describes being a trash or cherish clothing shoot, a separate photo session would be the best way to get the big day you want and the photographs you'll love without losing an enormous chunk of your wedding day. It also means that you and your photographer can make the ideal time of day for the best light and you have scope for rescheduling whether it's pouring with rain. In several countries, particularly the US, high end wedding photography is evolving towards three shoots: the engagement shoot, the marriage day, and an editorial session. Don't necessarily think that it all has to be carried out one day.

Artistic or Craft Wedding Photography

Essentially an evolution of traditional wedding photography, this type of photography supplies a contemporary take on the regular set of posed photographs, although these are both terms which were somewhat over used by the photographic community, so again seek information. At its best this genre can create moving romantic images, however some photographers can over use the same poses, therefore it can feel a bit impersonal. Ask to find out lots of shoots and don't be afraid to input your own personal ideas at your pre-wedding meeting.


There are lot of styles of photographer around, but the main thing is usually to look beyond the catchy buzzwords and appear long and hard at portfolios. Ultimately it does not take competence of the photographer you happen to be hiring that really matters. Experience, personal service and professionalism are what ensure a consistent standard of photography from wedding to wedding, and also the consistency and ability to deal with the different shooting issues that present themselves throughout a big day. Their portfolio should show a good balance of shots from bridal preparations on the first dance. Seek advice about how much time they will need to complete those all important formal and couples shots, and work out how much time you are happy to give. Even with more observational styles, planning and communication ahead of the wedding is vital for the best results and to get them efficiently. Keep to the guidelines and you're sure to have a memorable big day with photos to complement.