Defining Your Photographic Style
One of the hardest things for all photographers, specifically newbies, is finding their own unique style and vision for the work they make. So how can you go from taking great photographs to become a great photographer? One with a distinguishable style that is seen and consistent in all of your photos? Below is a list of tips to help you reflect on your own work in order to find what your style and approach is to become a phenomenal photographer.
What Do You Like?
One of the biggest things that will influence your work and help you decide what you’d like to see in your own work is the work of photographers that inspire you. What is it about their work that you are drawn to? What makes that work really resonate with you on a physical and emotional level? These are the things that you should look into to help you direct your vision of what you want your work to be. You should, however, really discern between photography that is good and you like, versus photography that moves you. In the end, that what you want; to move your viewers.
Reflect on Your Work
When you want to find what your style is, take a look at the work you have already done. As you go, note what you think are your best, or most moving, shots that you have taken. Then try to find what the connection is between those shots. Maybe your eye is drawn to the shots that have shallow depth of field. Maybe your best work is vivid shots of nature and landscapes. Whatever it might be, really take a critical look into what you think makes your photography stand out, and try to incorporate that as a visual motif into your work.
Seek Critical Feedback
This might be one of the hardest things to expose yourself to, but sometimes you need to seek feedback on your work. Ask others around you that you trust to provide you with feedback that can direct your work. This isn’t just friends and family that want to support you, but instead find people that can give you objective feedback. They can tell you what is working versus what is making your photo just another good looking shot amongst other shots. You want to stand out, and asking a critical eye to help out is the best way for you to know that your work is resonating with an audience.
By doing these mentioned things, you’ll be able to start getting a better personal voice heard from your photographic work. Don’t be discouraged if it takes some time, because nailing down a specific aesthetic is difficult, and you need to be patient. Just remember that when you think you have something that works, keep doing it, and be ever vigilant to keep growing as a visual artist.
Jordan Mendys is a North Carolina photographer and fillmaker. He also blogs for DX3.