Lifestyle photography is becoming more and more popular lately. It captures a person in their natural environment and expresses their personality. Where and how to take lifestyle photos? And why this genre is so popular among many photographers today? These and other questions will be answered in this article.

Lifestyle means lifestyle and is actually a summary of how we look, what we do, what we enjoy, what we eat, where we live and how we present ourselves to others. But we’re going to talk about what it all means to a photographer who wants to take lifestyle photos.

What is lifestyle photography?


Lifestyle photography is right where a traditional portrait leaves off and reportage photography begins. I call lifestyle photography a “stylized snapshot.” It’s about capturing the moment as authentically as possible while adhering to the basic rules of creating a portrait, be it good composition, color harmony or lighting conditions.

Simply put, it’s about photographing a person or a group of people in their environment, doing normal activities, but of course as flattering as possible. It is important that the photo tells a story, reveals the personality and emotions of the people photographed. But how can this be achieved?

Lifestyle photography

How and where to photograph lifestyle

The be-all and end-all of any photo shoot is the light. To make your photos look really natural, it’s important to be able to work with natural light. When shooting outdoors, it’s ideal to take advantage of the golden hour or when the sun is obscured by clouds. Indoors, we have to make do with light from windows and home lighting such as table lamps, floor lamps, or decorative fixtures, avoiding traditional fluorescent lighting whenever possible.

What is the most important thing in lifestyle photos?

  • Emotions
  • Touches
  • Environment
  • Props

Depending on who we are photographing, we choose the appropriate location. If it is a family with children, we photograph at their home, in the garden, on the playground, in the park or on the meadow. If we’re photographing a child who likes to skate, we’ll go to a skate park or an urban setting with an industrial feel, etc. There are really a lot of possibilities.

Props play an equally important role. Kids can bring a favorite toy to make them feel comfortable. Adults can bring something that reflects their interests and personality, whether it’s a book, jewelry, or transportation.

What completes the overall look of the photo is the clothing. The colors should correspond or contrast with the surroundings, depending on whether you want the photo to look harmonious or more provocative. Ideally, you should know what adjustments you’ll be making in Zoner Photo Studio X so that you have a consistent visual style prepared (at least in your mind).

Since emotions play a crucial role in lifestyle photography, the photographer needs to be a bit of a psychologist. He should get to know the photographed person better and be able to relax him so that he feels and, most importantly, looks natural. And last but not least, the photographer should be a clown, so he can make the children laugh and have fun, then they will cooperate better. And believe me, if the kids are relaxed, so are the parents.

What it looks like in practice

Theory is a beautiful thing, but until we try it all out in practice, it’s not much use. Let’s describe lifestyle photography with a specific example of a family lifestyle photo shoot.

The family arrives at an agreed location in the city park. After a general greeting, I focus mainly on the kids, we get to know each other, I compliment them on their outfit/hairstyle/toys and ask how they are looking forward to the photo shoot. If the answer is negative, I make a sad face with a grimace, which makes most kids laugh. If not, I ask if they might want to show a photo of their parents or their own.

Older kids are interested in how the camera works… Everyone has to find their own approach that works. Together we find a suitable place to take the pictures. I explain to them how to turn to the light. Next, we discuss appropriate poses. Although posing is not strictly done at Lifestyle, I suggest options and the family chooses what feels most natural to them.

I emphasize the importance of touch, telling them to hold hands, hug, occasionally kiss, pet each other, tickle the kids, etc. Most adults are nervous before a photo shoot (especially dads), but once we explain what to expect and what to do, they are immediately calmer. First, I take the static photos while the kids are still calm. When the kids get tired and start frolicking, I suggest them to play a game with their parents or pick a flower for mom or bring a nice rock for dad. The most important thing is to capture the interactions, the positive and sincere emotions that happen right in front of the camera.

With lifestyle, you can experiment a lot, for example with different shooting angles. I like to shoot from above, so it’s handy to bring a folding step, but you can also get by with a bench. A view from below is also interesting, it depends on what you expect from the photo and what you focus on.

For lifestyle, you can also focus on details that capture a certain mood/emotion. For example, holding hands, bare feet in the sand, hands hugging the father’s neck… The photographed family doesn’t even have to look into the lens, because in Lifestyle this is rather undesirable. We can ask the family members to look at each other, laugh even with their eyes closed, etc. You wouldn’t believe how many people are relieved when they don’t have to stare into the lens, but most do it because they think that’s what’s expected of them in a photo shoot.

Advantages of lifestyle photography

While lifestyle photography has long been popular and sought after abroad, it is only now becoming known in this country. More and more photographers are also focusing on it for many practical reasons. So what are the advantages?

  • You don’t need a studio
  • If you capture a beautiful emotion, you even forgive a slight blur or increased noise on the photo
  • You don’t have to force anyone to pose
  • You can be creative and improvise on the spot
  • The photo shoot takes place in a relaxed atmosphere
What is considered lifestyle photography?

Answer: Lifestyle photography is a genre of photography that captures candid moments of everyday life. It’s often used to capture the personality of a person or a family, and to document special occasions or milestones.
Lifestyle photographers often work with natural light, and try to capture opposed, spontaneous moments as they happen. They often spend time getting to know their clients in order to better understand their personalities and what kinds of photos will best represent them. Lifestyle photography can be used for personal or commercial purposes.

How much is a lifestyle photoshoot?

Answer: Lifestyle photography sessions usually start at around $350. This price may go up depending on the location of the shoot, the number of people being photographed, and the length of the session. A typical lifestyle photography session lasts for two to three hours.

What is the difference between portrait and lifestyle photography?

Portrait photography is focused on capturing the subject(s) in a single frame, while lifestyle photography is more about capturing the subject(s) in their natural environment and everyday activities.
Portrait photographers often stage their subjects in specific ways, using props and lighting to create a certain look or feeling. They may also pose their subjects in front of a plain background to emphasize the subject’s features. Lifestyle photographers, on the other hand, try to capture their subjects in more candid moments and settings.
Lifestyle photography can be used for commercial purposes, such as advertising or editorial content, or it can be purely personal. Portrait photography is also often used for commercial purposes, such as headshots for actors.

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