Different Types of Photography
Published 25th October 2012
The art of photography has a very wide scope, which has many ways of expression and many categories each with a different purpose. Popular fields include portraiture, landscape and glamour photography. But those are just a few of the infinite possibilities you can do with photography. Each photographer will usually have a preference when choosing what branch of photography they want to delve into. For example, a professional photographer may favor photojournalism and an amateur may choose to master macro photography. If you’re still unsure of which one you might be passionate with, read on to get an idea about the types of photography you can start mastering.
Photojournalism isn’t restricted to professionals as amateurs can break into this field too even with limited training. Often this type of photography is mostly done by professionals. Professionalism and integrity are very important in this field as the shots taken must reflect the original scene exactly. Mostly the photo must not be altered in any way. The objective in this field is to create powerful images to tell a story and evoke emotions even without words. It can be quite difficult to master the skill, but it’s not something years of practice and experience can’t achieve.
Documentary photography is not unlike photojournalism in that it aims to narrate a story through pictures. The difference between the two is that documentary photography acts like a historical record of a certain political or social era while photojournalism deals mainly with a particular scene or event. For example, a documentary photography project may be a series of images depicting the lives of the inner city homeless or the story of a combat. Any subject will do, as long as the original scenes are maintained without any alteration of the image.
This type of photography is all about taking action shots of a variety of subjects, though we might be most familiar with the exciting and action-packed world of sports photography. Since the subject is constantly moving, the sports photographer must know its subjects well enough to be able to anticipate their moves and get the right timing for shooting the photo.
Macrophotography is all about taking photos at close range. This used to be an exclusive realm for professionals or photographers with advanced and expensive equipment, but thanks to the macro settings in many digital cameras, amateurs can now practice this particular field. Common subjects include flowers, insects and anything with interesting details that are best revealed when taken up close.
Special equipments that can capture minuscule subjects are required in this field. These cameras and microscopes are best put into use when capturing images in the scientific world. It has been used in many branches of science including astronomy, biology and medicine.
It might be easy for some to confuse this with pornography. It is far from that, however. Glamour photography is sexy and erotic, but it aims to play with the curves and shadows of the subjects rather than the nudity and lurid poses that define pornography. It’s all about showing the model in a glamorous fashion, and can portray flirtatiousness, mystery and playfulness.
As the name implies, this type of photography involves taking photos from the air. Its functions may include surveying or construction, capturing birds and the weather and taking photos for military purposes. Some of the additional equipments aerial photographers use are planes, ultralights, parachutes, balloons and remote controlled aircraft, all helping them to take pictures from up above.
Scuba divers and snorkelers are the frequent users of this type of photography. Among most photographers, however, this is one of the less common types because of the high cost involved. Scuba diving is expensive in itself and you have to buy special equipments required underwater which can be costly as well. And even if an amateur already possesses the equipments and scuba skills, shooting photos underwater is not a simple task. Scuba goggles are magnified, thus altering how the photographer sees things.
Art photography is very diverse. There is a wide variety of subjects one can choose to capture. A nature photographer may opt to use his underwater shots for an art show on sea life while a portrait photographer may choose black and white portraitures. It doesn’t really matter what subject one wants to feature. The important thing is to be able to show something with an aesthetic value worthy to be called an art.
One of the oldest forms of photography, portraiture captures not just the image but also the personality of the subject. This is a popular field of work for Amateur photographers, as there is not a high cost to set up and take images. No special camera or equipment are needed for portraiture, anyone can start off in this field with just a camera.
Excellent wedding photos make use of a combination of the different types of photography. Aside from acting as a documentary of the event, the photos may be creatively done to produce effects. Sepia toning can provide a timeless feel to them. A photographer may also use his skills in portrait and glamour photography to maximize his shots of the bride and groom.
Pictures are essential in communicating especially when advertising is involved. Since photography plays an essential role in advertising, there are many professional photographers in this field. Unique and enticing photos are the required here so the skills involved in different types like glamour and macrophotography are necessary.
A combination of different categories of photography is also utilised here. One can use advertising and documentary photography as well as vernacular photography that depicts a certain local or historical flavour. The feel of the place can also be captured by landscapes and portraitures.