Lessie McFarlane

November 2, 2022

Best Seattle Wedding Photographer

Stunning Wedding Photography Styles and Which Style is Right for You

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Wedding Photography Styles and Which Style is Right for You

If you’ve stumbled upon this blog post, congratulations! You are likely engaged and in the process of searching for a wedding photographer. Perhaps biased, but coming from a Seattle wedding photographer myself, securing a wedding photographer that fits your needs and wants is one of the most important parts of wedding planning. One of my favorite parts of my job is when a newly engaged, excited couple inquires about my wedding photography packages – it is exciting for all parties involved!

When it comes to selecting your wedding photographer, there are hundreds of talented photographers with skill sets and engaging personalities to choose from. I encourage you to find a wedding photography style you prefer, before reaching out to the first photographer that comes to mind. And, well, if you’re not sure which style fits you most, that’s totally okay! Through my experience and research, I’ve seen it all. Today, I’ll be sharing the full guide to the various wedding photography styles and how to choose which style is right for you.

Read on for everything you’ll need to know about photography styles when booking your wedding photographer. And PS: if you are searching for a Black Seattle-based wedding photographer that offers fun, classic, traditional, and candid wedding photography in the Pacific Northwest, you’ve found your girl!


Which Style is Right for You


Fine Art Wedding Photography

Fine art wedding photography is typically described as elegant, soft, and a perfect combination of traditional wedding photography and editorial wedding photography. Often, fine art wedding photography appears to be shot on film – which many times it can be, but sometimes simply the post-production editing gives the photographs that grainy, delicate film look. Not only is fine art wedding photography shot in a specialized manner (less posed and brighter lighting), fine art wedding photographers typically edit their photographs in a very light and airy way. Receiving the title ‘fine art wedding photography for a reason, I’d have to agree that each photograph looks like a piece of art. Fine art wedding photography album galleries are simply a dream to browse.

Fine Art Wedding Photography is right for you if… you are a romantic at heart, you consider yourself a dreamer rather than a realist, you claim to be planning an elegant wedding, and you may be a lover of storytelling photographs. Fine art wedding photography offers a somewhat luxurious approach to photography, typically refusing to showcase the sweaty dance floor or harsh or dark lighting, and may offer an approach to your wedding day that feels polished.


Fine art Wedding Photographer in Seattle.


Moody Wedding Photography

Dark and moody wedding photography can be described exactly as you’d think… Dark and moody lighting, enhancement of shadows, and some dramatic posing. This style of wedding photography is a mix between the way the photographs are shot as well as the editing they receive. You’ll typically see harsher light from the sun and most photographs appear to have a lower contrast and a lower saturation. An extremely talented photographer, though on the other coast and located in Hudson Valley is Christine Ashburn. Christine delivers some of the most gorgeous wedding photographs, all with a very dark and moody style. She represents this style of wedding photography perfectly.

Dark and Moody Wedding Photography is right for you if… you appreciate the raw and the natural, you want your photographs to encourage others to feel your love story – not just view it, and you simply prefer a mystical aesthetic vs. a feminine, bright aesthetic. 


Couple holding hands at beach during sunset in Cannon Beach Oregon.


Vintage Wedding Photography

Whether shot on a film camera or later edited in the post-production process, vintage wedding photography typically appears grainy, offers lower saturated hues and a sepia tone, and occasionally the posing can be more dramatic than a typical candid photograph would be. Though similar to traditional wedding photography, I would argue that the traits that make a visual “vintage” are mainly done in the editing process.

Vintage Wedding Photography is right for you if… you love the old-fashioned cinema style, you are a romantic at heart, and you have a love for a timeless piece of art. Vintage wedding photography has muted tones and the images are photographed to last a lifetime.


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Editorial Wedding Photography

Imagine your wedding day is a brand campaign that is going to be shared in a full VOGUE magazine spread. Every detail will appear clean and crisp, dramatic, and typically the posting will feel a bit untraditional. Editorial wedding photographers usually focus on posing – mainly for the bride and groom – and the lighting. I truly feel like we’re in a time where many couples are leaning towards everything but editorial wedding photography, as many are preferring that real, raw, capture of their special day. But, I will say, the luxury wedding industry does have many clients that lean towards this style.

Editorial Wedding Photography is right for you if… you’ve dreamt of frame-worthy images for your wedding – not one, not two, but every single photograph –,  you are willing to spend a lot of time on photography on your wedding day, or if you are simply in love with being in the spotlight.  Just like a Hollywood photoshoot, an editorial wedding photography shoot will take time, patience, and more props than just one photographer. It’ll feel more like a photo shoot or movie set than it will a wedding venue, and if that’s your preference, that’s okay!

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Photojournalistic Wedding Photography

Photojournalistic wedding photography is sometimes referred to as documentary-style or candid. This style of wedding photography is one that’s made itself extremely popular over the last few years, as couples are leaning towards images that showcase the event and its endeavors. This style of wedding photography is storytelling and an incredible way to capture memories. From snapshots that capture dance-floor moments, and teary-eyed speeches, to moments you’ll look back on with pure joy – you won’t regret this wedding photography style.

Photojournalistic Wedding Photography is right for you if… you are a documenter, storyteller, and someone that cherishes the moments seen and unseen. Perhaps you forgot about that sweet moment when your Maid of Honor helped you dress? A photojournalistic wedding photographer will capture the memory for you. Maybe you were focused on your first dance and weren’t able to see how joyful and emotional your grandparents appeared. Again, a photojournalistic wedding photographer will capture this memory for you.  


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Landscape Wedding Photography

Landscape wedding photography has become popular in recent times due to elaborate affairs like destination weddings or mountain-top elopements. If you are planning a wedding in a highly scenic location like a mountain top, an island or beach, or the desert, you might want to think about hiring a landscape wedding photographer. Many times these photographers will use a wide lens angle or even a drone to capture more of the landscape.

Landscape Wedding Photography is right for you if… you are planning an elaborate wedding where the main focus is the location. Whether this is a wedding or elopement on a beach, island, mountain, desert, or somewhere abroad, if your location is your wedding backdrop, I’d suggest a landscape wedding photographer.


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Traditional Wedding Photography

Traditional wedding photography is exactly what you’d think it is… traditional, classic, and timeless photographs. These photographs are typically posed as a stereotypical wedding would be: shots of the bride and groom, each family, the wedding party, the cake cutting, and captures of many other wedding day traditions. These photographs are shot to stand the test of time, offering true timeless visuals to your wedding album.

Traditional Wedding Photography is right for you if… you are searching for a photographer that will capture the simplicity of your wedding day. If you’re looking to hire a traditional wedding photographer, you’re likely someone that wants to capture every person in the room, the details on the tables, the dance floor memories, and the classic posed wedding party images.


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Black and White Wedding Photography

As obvious as this may be in the title, I couldn’t share wedding photography styles and not include this beauty. Black and white wedding photography is such a classic way to go. Personally, I think it’s important to have a mix of color and black-and-white images from your wedding day. So, when you’re selecting your photographer, check if this is something they offer. I offer both for my couples, with most packages mainly including colorful photographs with a sprinkle of black and white goodness. Here’s an example of some black and white photography I’ve shot and delivered, as well as a recent colorful wedding day. Black and white photographs capture pure emotion, without any distraction. I definitely have a love for B&W photographs.

Black and White Wedding Photography is right for you if… you’re a sucker for the classics, you love viewing raw emotion, and you’re not focusing too much on the color palette of your wedding. I say the last part because if colors are important to you, I cannot imagine that you’d select a full B&W photography package.


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Though I do feel like I was able to share the most popular styles of wedding photography throughout this blog post, I did want to share a few others that might not be as popular. If none of the photography styles above sound fitting for your wants and needs, I’d take a look into the few listed below:

  • Aerial Wedding Photography
  • Warm Wedding Photography
  • Desaturated Wedding Photography
  • Modern Wedding Photography
  • Artistic Wedding Photography
  • Light and Airy Wedding Photography

Regardless of the style of wedding photography that you choose, your wedding day will be special because of the choices you make while planning. Once you select your wedding photographer, I recommend you take engagement photographs or couples photos with the photographer, just to make sure you like their style of photography. This is a great way to practice posing with your partner, time to get to know your photographer, and you’ll be able to see if you like the outcome of the photographs. After all, I’m sure you won’t want your wedding day to be the trial run!

Wishing you the best of luck in selecting which wedding photography style is best for you, and sending lots of love to you during this sweet season of engagement! If you’re a Seattle couple getting married, don’t hesitate to reach out – I’d love to connect and see if my wedding photography style is right for you!