Learning About the Different Genres of Photography

Learning About the Different Genres of Photography

August 8, 2018 Off By Gancio Cielo
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Here’s a post submitted to me by a friend!

As I began to trade in my smartphone for an actual camera (for everyday pics), I found myself taking more pictures of things that caught my interest. Buildings, moments in my life, even the occasional selfie.

Then when I printed out those pictures, I began to show them around to people, and I got several great responses on how many photography genres I was using. This confused me a bit because I was just taking pictures.

But if I really was delving into the hidden life of photography and its genres, I needed to know more about what I was writing for and if I could find a genre I liked.

Several genres, several styles

My first thought was to do some online research and I quickly found some well-known genres, including aerial photography, which was started in 1858 when a Frenchman took a picture from the basket of a hot air balloon 80 meters above the ground and mostly involves taking pictures of cities and landscapes.

If you want to say closer to the ground, architectural photography lets buildings and their design fall under this category and these photographers use natural light to its best effect to show off what makes the inside, outside, and design of buildings so unique.


Documentary photography is typically paired with narration and is used during documentaries and news stories to help tell the story of the narrator. These photos need to support the story, and a photographer will have to spend just as much time with the target as the narrator does.

Finally the last genre I saw, and my personal favorite is landscape photography, which is a picture of scenery or the environment, and a use of natural light and a steady hand is required to make these photographs shine.

Things you need for every genre

However, I learned that for every single genre, a photographer needs the same basic skills:

  • A steady hand: Whether it’s a tripod or ironclad nerves, every photographer needs to keep the camera steady to eliminate movement, blurry photos, and save time.
  • Knowledge of the camera: Working with every aspect of the camera and trying to use different settings and filters can help greatly when it comes to whatever genre is being done.
  • Editing software and know-how: Going hand in hand with knowledge about your camera, having editing software and knowing how to manipulate natural light, shadows, and crop the photo can help when it’s time to polish the image.



I already knew what type of genres I personally wanted to focus on when I started my career, and by learning more about what skills and equipment I needed for those genres helped me to specialize my talents to the point where I could share them.

Now I’m able to take photos of beautiful landscapes and candid moments in the lives of my friends and family for my career, and my pictures have been the stepping stone to greater and greater opportunities for me.

The best part is, I’m just getting started.