Let’s take a deeper dive into consistent photographic style. The elements of photographic style are: colors,composition, and lighting.
The elements of keeping a set of photos consistent are: lighting, editing, and colors.
The question then remains, what are the different styles and how do you create your own unique style?
Questions to ask yourself when embarking on the journey of consistent photographic style are; Which photo style appeals most to you? Do you have a favorite photographer and what is their style?
The major photo styles are, moody, light and airy, and true to color. From these three base styles there are several different spin offs of each that can be accomplished. For example Brandon Woelfel has a very unique style that doesn’t truly fall into any of the above base styles. If I was to say, his style would fall somewhere between moody and true to color. Even though his style is not of the three most commonly consistent styles, Brandon Woelfel does have a very specific style that many photographers aspire to recreate. ( You can find his work at www.instagram.com/brandonwoelfel/)
Let’s take a quick look at his style and how it is achieved through the elements of photographic style and consistency.
Colors - Woelfel sticks to a very specific color palette. Since a color palette is as much the colors that aren’t present as it is the ones that are, let us start with taking a look at the colors that don’t appear in his photos. The colors that don’t appear in his photos are yellow (he leans towards gold), green (very blue greens appear but never the crayon green we often think of), and orange (again he has them pushed toward a golden color). These are the base colors that are not found in his editing style. Do remember that the color may be present in a photograph but the hue of the color has been adjusted to fit the more pastel color scheme. His blues are pushed towards aqua/ turquoise and skin colors to a very natural brownish pink tan. I have found that once you nail your desired skin tone and then keep skin tone the same across all of your photos you are one step closer to a consistent color scheme.
Composition - Brandon Woelfel defies one of the first “rules of photography” ( Are there really rules of photography? - This is a debate for another day) I ever learned by composing an image with his subject centered. You will also notice that he almost always takes the photo in landscape mode ( horizontal) rather than portrait style (vertical). Again very consistent here.
Lighting - A fan of neon signs and shooting at twilight, he maintains a consistent blue color temperature over all his images.Editing - Here Brandon Woelfel plays with a unique set of color hues and luminosity to correct the in camera results to better fit his desired outcome. Often shooting underexposed, he bring up the exposure to balance out shadows and add depth.
As we all progress and continue to learn our own artistic loves we can watch our final product evolve. For me I’m so excited and curious about where this journey will lead me. One year ago I was doing my very first photo session with limited knowledge of camera manual mode and today I’m designing photographs in Photoshop. This is a big leap for me and i will continue to track my progress and knowledge as I progress through year two and beyond.
**Disclaimer: this is all based off of observation from following Brandon Woelfel’s work on Instagram overtime. I do not have have hard facts on how he truly works.**
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