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Photography Trends to Watch in 2018: What’s New and What’s Coming

Photography Trends in 2018

The year of 2018 has started, and this is the best time to make plans to succeed in photography. But before that, we need to know the answer to this question:

“What are the photography trends in 2018?”

We’ve combined the predictions from the experts across various branches of photography with a survey to get insights from the market about their preferences in photography. From commercial photography to wedding photography trends in 2018, we’ve covered them in this article.

If you’re a brand, a professional photographer, or simply a photography enthusiast, we hope these insights will give you a better understanding of the market/audience preferences.


We asked, you answered

A while ago, we asked our readers on Instagram a few things about photography. From their preferred gear to take photos, to their preference in photography, we’ve compiled the answers to help shed some light 2018 photography trends.

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Despite the rise of the mobile photography, DSLR/mirrorless camera will still continue to be the preferred option for photography enthusiasts, but as we can see from the survey, mobile is catching up steadily in terms of popularity.

We’ve seen many people have started improving their travel photography skills in the past few years, and this seems to continue being a popular option.

There is much more interest in street photography than portrait photography, and this seems to be in line with the current trend where natural, candid shots are more appealing than the staged ones. This also applies to wedding photography, as 88% people choose candid shots for their documentation.

It’s interesting to see that there’s only a small difference between people who choose lifestyle photography and professional photography. Social media may have played an important role in this, and as social media will only get bigger in the next few years, so too will the interest in lifestyle photography.


What do the experts say?

Many experts have penned their predictions for various branches of photography. Each has different detailed explanations, but the main point is mostly the same for any branch of photography: people are in favour of relatable, authentic photos.

But what does this mean?

Here’s the breakdown.

Wedding photography trends in 2018

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As seen in recent years, photojournalistic-style coverage for wedding photography will continue to be favoured in 2018. Many couples will opt for natural candid shots, instead of the posed images that used to be the style a few years ago.

Drones will be even more popular, and many wedding photography businesses will start to use them more to stay ahead of the game. More and more clients want to have aerial shots/footage of their wedding, and drones will soon become a necessity for wedding photographers to keep their businesses competitive in the industry.

Pre-wedding or engagement photo sessions will gain more popularity next year. It started in Asia, but the popularity is already making its way to the rest of the world. While before it was just supplementary or optional, more couples will include pre-wedding photo session on their standard list of wedding preparation.

READ: 15 Things You Should Do to Ace Pre-Wedding Photography

Commercial and fashion photography trends in 2018

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Commercial photography in 2018 will focus more on authenticity. People won’t be drawn to perfectly polished photos anymore, as they embrace natural-look and imperfection, something they can relate to. Staged photos are becoming less popular, and natural photos will work best for marketing and advertising.

For fashion photography, this means producing photos with less enhancement and retouching on the model. Again, people want to see something relatable, and heavily edited photos are anything but. Showing imperfections and realness in photos will work well for brands, rather than photos that look unrealistically flawless.

The use of mixed media (photo and video) will be popular, and brands will produce more videos for their marketing campaigns.

Mobile photography trends in 2018

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On social media like Instagram, lifestyle photos that are taken with a phone camera tend to generate more engagement than professional shots taken with a DSLR. Social media users tend to engage more with casual shots, as they show authenticity. Platforms like Instagram Stories also play a role in encouraging people to take more photos for quick updates, and thus, people will rely heavily on their phones to take photos while improving their skills.

Because more and more photos are created each day, people tend to get bored with similar angles and crops, and this means photographers have to try harder to produce photos with completely different angles and perspective.

READ: 10 Things You Should Do to Improve Your Smartphone Photography

Street photography and photojournalism trends in 2018

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Photojournalism will become more popular as cameras (especially phone cameras) become more accessible, with more importance put on the storytelling aspect, and the content/photos that will stand out are those that convey deep stories or strong messages.

Stock photos

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Stock photos have been one of the income sources for photographers, and while in the past brands usually looked for posed or staged images, in 2018 they will favour authentic photos. This means photos that are candid, emotive, or showing a lifestyle will perform better than a staged or heavily enhanced stock photos


Do you have any predictions for photography trends in 2018? Share them in the comments below!

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