Wedding Photography Styles – What are the differences?!

 Wedding Photography Styles

So you’re looking at choosing a wedding photographer and you’ve seen lots of different wedding photography styles.

This can be overwhelming if you’re not sure on the type of photographer you want for your big day. Sound about right? 

You might have seen words such as “documentary”, “reportage”, “candid” and “fine art”, to name just some!

Let me break it down and talk about the basic difference. Once you know the difference it’ll make looking for the style of photographer you want so much easier.

Fine Art Style

With Fine Art photography the photographs are well considered. Which means I see an image in my mind and I then “create” it to how my mind pictures it.

For example we may be doing your couple portraits and I see the most beautiful light shining through the trees. I look at it and think it will make the most lovely backdrop for some portraits. So I will “choose” to place you in the best spot for the light to fall on you to give the best image. Then I will guide you, whilst also encouraging you to engage naturally with each other as I move around you taking shots from different angles.I might use shadows to create drama and mood in an image or light to give a dreamy romantic feel. It will all depend on what is available to me at the time but I like my photographs to have a “feel” to them, not just to merely be a “photograph”. If that makes sense?!

I chat with you throughout the shoot but I like you to react with each other as naturally as possible, you’re usually laughing at this point and that all adds to the personality-filled portraits I like to get!

So Fine art wedding photography involves pre-thinking a shot and creating it. This goes for detail shots of things like your wedding rings, shoes and dress too. They are styled to create the perfect scene and to show your special details to their best.

Documentary Style

The most common genre of wedding photography styles is Documentary wedding photography. Also known as “Reportage” wedding photography.

In it’s truest form this means photographing your wedding day totally candidly. Shooting your wedding purely as a viewer, reporting and documenting the scene and events of the day as they unfold, with no placing or styling of the couple or details. Basically it means shooting what they see to give a true account of the wedding.

Whilst there are some pure documentary photographers, most “documentary” photographers that I know do involve a certain amount of guidance. They might guide the couple photographs and the group shots for example but then shoot the day naturally capturing candid moments as they happen.

When a photographer says they photograph lots of “candid” moments this falls into the documentary category of wedding photography.

So, where do I fit in?!

My Wedding Photography Style!

My personal style is a little unique. I photographs weddings using a mixture of Fine Art wedding photography and Documentary wedding photography.

So I like to use the best of both!

I shoot your couple photographs in a fine art style meaning they are well considered to give you portraits worthy of a magazine cover! All done in a very natural fun way to put you at ease and feel completely relaxed. I also like to capture the times in between when you’re just relaxing having fun in between shots, these can be amazing!

And my detail shots are thought out too and styled to give you beautiful images of your special wedding details.

Throughout the whole day I capture all the natural candid moments of your guests as they celebrate with you.

I am always seeing real moments happen and catching them so fast you’d never know I took them until you see your gallery!

I would say the biggest part of the day is shot in a documentary style, occasionally engaging with you and your guests to get those natural “just caught” group pictures.

There is always a lot going on during a wedding day and when you see all those little moments put together in your gallery you will see the complete story of your day. The combination of fine art portraits and reportage photography shots layer to build a complete and gorgeous account of your wedding day.

Edit Style

Another thing to consider when choosing your photographer is the “edit” of your images.

This means how they appear in terms of colour and tone. Do you like images that look light, airy and pastel? Or do you prefer images that are darker and more saturated earthy toned?

Look through each photographer’s portfolio thoroughly before you decide, as the style of edit is important when considering your decision.

My own edit style is light, bright and romantic. I edit each image one by one to make sure your gallery is perfect! It takes time but I always give each wedding the time it needs to give the perfect gallery. 

See my wedding galleries for individual weddings to get a good idea of how I edit a wedding.

I hope this has helped a bit with the different types of wedding photographer styles you may have seen out there! And hopefully helped with any confusion you may be feeling with choosing your ideal photographer.

So of all the wedding photography styles available which is your favourite?! If you are looking for a Fine Art South Wales wedding photographer with a natural, relaxed feel then do get in touch as you might be looking at your perfect wedding photographer right now!

I’d love to hear all about your day!