What is Lifestyle Photography?

March 1, 2021

We see lifestyle photography every day but when it comes down to describing it actually, even the best photographers have a difficult time articulating the style. But if you call yourself a lifestyle photographer, you should have a very clear idea of what that means to you.

Traditionally, lifestyle photography lies somewhere in between documentary photography and classic portraiture. A documentary photographer will have a ‘fly on the wall’ approach, catching life as it is without trying to interfere with what is going on. A photographer specialized in classic portraiture will want to have full control over what’s in the frame – light, backgrounds, wardrobe, props and poses.

For myself, lifestyle photography is all about capturing a ‘slice of life.’ I like shooting a person or group of people performing an activity in an interesting way. Then my job is to capture that action in such a way to tell a story and give the viewer a sense of the life they are viewing. I pride myself on knowing how to set up those moments and interact with talent to bring out the most authentic emotions possible.

True lifestyle photography has a feeling of spontaneity. It creates authentic, natural connections. Because you’re not doing a lot of posing or structuring of shots, you never know when the perfect shot is going to come. You need to expect the unexpected and always keep your camera ready to shoot.

What’s your own definition of lifestyle? Do you interpret it differently? Share your experience with me in the comments below!

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