What Is Lifestyle Photography and How to Become a Pro at It

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Photography is the art of capturing moments and expressing what mere words cannot. Imagine you are on the beach, staring at the cascading waves with a light breeze. Wouldn’t you wish for time to just stop? Clicking a photo brings back the bliss felt when it was taken.  It transports you to a whole new place in this bustling world.  And that is exactly what lifestyle photography is.

Lifestyle photography, in its simplest form, is a piece of life encapsulated in a single photo. It is what we call everyday art. Have you ever seen images of people sitting down for a picnic with their family? How about a person playing a guitar? Well, these everyday activities are what make up the recent trend of lifestyle photography.

Lifestyle photography is known for being authentic yet staged. It uses subjects, but it is the art of capturing snapshots of them in a natural and candid way.

What does it mean to be a Lifestyle Photographer? 

If you are a lifestyle photographer, it is your job to tell a story through photos depicting real-life situations. There are various categories that come under lifestyle photography. Some of them include family, children, etc. Your aim is to showcase real-life through a reel lens.

Points to Remember as a Lifestyle Photographer

1. Ambiance

As lifestyle photography is about keeping it natural, the most important aspect for any lifestyle photographer is the surroundings. When shooting, you must remember to play with time and light. This helps you to stay true to the situation under consideration.

The perfect example of a shoot is the autumn season. Imagine leaves in hues of red and yellow, freshly raked on the ground. It is every kid’s dream to just jump onto a pile of crunchy leaves. How would you capture this moment? Well, you would probably take a shot whilst the sun is bright and shining to create a balance of colors.

2. Personal Connection

In the field of lifestyle photography, it is beneficial to keep a personal touch with your subject. The best way to do this is to get to know your model. Learn about their likes, dislikes, hobbies, etc. Learn their story because everyone has a story behind them. By doing so, you will be able to incorporate a few things to make the shoot fun, happy, and filled with character.

3. Be Authentic

Even though lifestyle photography is not absolutely authentic, it is vital to bring that element of authenticity despite the fact that it is staged.  But, how do you do this? Well, you can have your subjects dress up in everyday wear. In terms of setting, keep it a little messy. Not everything in a shot is supposed to be perfect. In fact, it is this imperfection that results in a great photo.

4. Be Prepared

Lifestyle photography is not a single take shot. As human behavior is unpredictable, it is important to be ready, because that perfect moment can occur any second. As a photographer, you have to be patient and know that the opportunity for the perfect shot will occur.

Don’ts of Lifestyle Photography 

1. Camera-Centered

Lifestyle photography, as we know, is about capturing candid moments. Thus, the most important rule is not to pose for the camera. Posing for the camera makes the photo look unnatural. Further, many subjects feel nervous when the camera is directly in front of them. Hence, it is important to remember that you place the camera in a way that allows the model to be natural. This guarantees you the perfect shot.

2. Make the Shot the Priority

As a lifestyle photographer, it is important to keep in mind the comfort of the subject. You should plan your shoot around them, and click photos of their everyday life. Some ways to do this is asking them to wear their normal clothes, and not designer brands that they might not feel comfortable in. In short, your subject should be your number one priority.

3. Being Narrow-Minded

Being a lifestyle photographer, you should be open-minded, and broaden your horizon. This enables you to get a bigger and complete picture. For example, do not just click photos of one element. Instead, take photographs of multiple elements in the same room to help you to create a story. Further, this lends cohesion to your images. Another way is to look at things from different viewpoints. Perception is a crucial element in the field of photography.

4. Boring 

Lifestyle photography is about taking snapshots of the unexpected. The best way to do this to engage your subjects. In simpler terms, plan activities that keep your models involved. This helps you to capture moments while the subjects are playing a game, or are engrossed in a conversation filled with laughter at the table. The main motto is to keep it fun, happy, and fresh.

Gearing up for your First Shoot

As a lifestyle photographer, you need to gather your equipment so that you are shoot-ready. But the question is – what do you need to take your first shoot? Well, the answer is here. Below are the key things to consider before shooting.

1. ISO

ISO, in the field of photography, represents the brightness aspect of your photo. When capturing your candid photos in a bright, well-lit area, it is important to maintain a low ISO. For a dark setting, a higher ISO is ideal. Consider purchasing a camera with good  ISO settings to help get high-quality images.

2. Lenses 

Lenses play a vital role in lifestyle photography. As a photographer, it is essential to have two main types of lenses: Prime and Wide Angle Lenses. The ideal size for a prime lens is 50mm, and this is definitely a must-have. Further, a wide-angle lens helps capture the bigger part of the shot.

3. Aperture

In photography, aperture refers to the opening of the lens in order to allow light to enter the camera. In lifestyle photography, your aperture size depends on the quality of the image. For example, if you are going for a blurry effect, it is ideal to have a low aperture number i.e f-number. So, the best way to find the right fit is to experiment with different f-numbers.

In conclusion, lifestyle photography is the art of clicking everyday, ordinary situations and transforming them to tell a story with just a photo. It aims at capturing something ordinary and presenting it in an extraordinary way. The subjects range from children to families. Who knew that simple things could also look fancy? With the help of the tips and tricks mentioned, you are sure to master this trending art form. So grab your camera and get ready to delve into the world of lifestyle photography.

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Marco Downs

Marco Downs

Marco Downs is our second founder and he is the creative head of this website. Marco stumbled upon photography only in college when he joined the photography club. His parents could never afford a camera for him as a child and it was in college that he saved up and bought his first camera. He now writes in-depth buyer guides and informational articles to assist the buyers. 
Marco Downs

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