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In 2020, the coronavirus pandemic forced many people, including photographers, to take a pause. Events were canceled, weddings got smaller, and socially distanced gatherings were the norm. But this 2021, things are looking up. Vaccination rollouts for COVID-19 are now being implemented across the globe. Many states and countries have started to lift travel bans and lockdowns for the economy to recover.

As the world opens up, it’s now time for photographers to prepare to head out again and do what they do best. But, of course, the post-COVID-19 world will be a different world. Whether you’re a pro or enthusiast, here are some of the latest photography trends you have to prepare for and even master to stand out.

Masks and Silhouettes

Even after the pandemic subsides, photography trends will highly reflect social distancing practices. Brands still need to remain sensitive to the coronavirus issue by using images that portray people wearing masks while keeping six feet of distance from each other. Many clothing brands have added face masks to their product line, so expect fashion portraits to include models wearing stylish clothes and masks.

Silhouette images are also on the rise, as they tend to show a single figure on its own. That look communicates feelings of isolation, which almost everyone has experienced during a global pandemic. Silhouette photos require proper backlighting. Practice taking photos of subjects that are positioned in front of a strong light source. Make sure no light comes from behind your camera to take great snaps.

Drone Photography

Most aerial shots are strikingly beautiful. That’s why professional wedding videographers and corporate video productions have been taking drone shots of wedding ceremonies and team-building events ever since drones became commercially available.

But there’s another reason drone photography will continue to trend. It’s the fact that people have been deprived of travel and outdoor scenery in the past year, and they would want to capture those in photos as much as they could. So as you head out again, expect people to ask for drone shots for their wedding photoshoots, product launches, and other events. It’s time to check whether you can add drone cameras to your arsenal. Once you get the device, master using it to show again the real beauty of the outdoors.

man taking a photograph

Authenticity Is Key

In the age of filters, retouching apps, isolation, and lockdowns, people are drawn toward authentic, unfiltered, and relatable images—photos that show the real beauty of the world outside the screens.

You have several options to show authenticity in your photographs. One is to do candid photoshoots by keeping your subjects from appearing overly staged. You can use natural lighting and make the setting relatable by adding a few imperfect elements to it. Another bold choice to champion authenticity is to leave your work untouched. Don’t use Photoshop nor Instagram filters. Focus only on bringing out your model’s natural beauty and make a conscious choice to embrace the flaws of your subject and setting.

Authenticity will also likely be a trend in weddings through relaxed wedding photography. Wedding photoshoots used to be a formal act; everyone posed in a proper but sometimes stiff manner. But now, expect many brides and grooms-to-be to ask for a more relaxed approach to their wedding photos. After all, if there’s one thing the global coronavirus pandemic has taught us, it is to live more at the moment.

Focus on Self-love

The emotional impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have made people realize the value of self-care. Self-care or self-love focuses on taking care of your mental health, especially at a difficult time. Many people will likely ask for solo portraits to commemorate surviving through a pandemic. Self-love concepts may also catch the eye of different photography competitions in the years to come.

Also, expect brands to champion self-love through photos of people looking relaxed and happy in their own company. But this self-love trend in photography isn’t only about relaxation. Valuing self-care or showing self-love may also include shots and concepts that feature body positivity, healthy spaces, and a healthy lifestyle in general.

Self-care is often associated with bright and dreamy pictures. Achieve the look or concept by creating a well-lit and minimalist setting, where the happiness of your subjects can easily be shown and captured.

Undeniably, the coronavirus pandemic has been tough. But photographers should never stop creating and improving their skills, especially if they want to head out again. Knowing these latest photography trends can make their comeback easier and smoother, giving them the edge they need to get ahead of the pack.


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