I remember photographing moonlit waves as they crashed against a shadowy cliffside. With every click, deeper hues of indigo revealed a drama only the night could create. Returning to this spot recently, I discovered a photog splashing around knee-deep in the waves, attempting to capture that same enchantment. Sound familiar?

As photographers, we all find ourselves following someone else’s footprints at one time or another. But have you paused to ponder—are you standing where others have stood, shooting where others have shot? The real trick isn’t just mastering the same shot—it’s making the shot uniquely yours.

A startling 1.2 trillion photos were taken worldwide in 2020, a statistic that displays the immense competition in the photography sector. How do you stand out?

Finding Your Unique Style

‘Just be unique.’ If it were only that simple, eh? I recall an old mentor advising me, ‘Find a difference that makes a difference–that’s your style.’

Now, let’s start this conversation the way I start my photoshoots—by addressing the bare bones. What makes a photograph compelling isn’t always about the perfect composition or light. The key lies in the mind of the creator—their perspective, their thought process, their heart—even their quirks.

Before dipping our toes into the vast ocean of style, let’s first understand ‘seo for photographers’—an essential factor in making your unique work discoverable online.

Understanding Your Style

It’s when I’m helping a shaky-handed amateur or advising a seasoned pro that I see eyes light up at a particular sentiment I pass along: To find your style, you gotta connect the dots backwards. To look ahead is uncertain, but to look back often reveals a path.

Think of your most cherished photographs. What common threads link them? Subject matter? Mood? Technique? Colors? Behold, you’re getting closer to uncovering your style!

Honing Your Style

Think about your wardrobe for a moment. It’s probably a fusion of influences, isn’t it? That eye-catching scarf, for instance, or those combat boots that exude your edgy side. Similar to developing a personal style in fashion, your unique photography style is also a mix of inspirations mingled with your own bend on things.

Experimentation is key. Tinker around with different photography techniques. Merge the boundaries of portraits and landscapes. Play with black and white contrast. Put old lenses on new camera bodies. Try it all until you find something that fits you, like a well-worn leather jacket.

Creating Your Brand

Now that you’ve discovered what special blend of composition, lighting, and mood speaks to you, it’s about cementing that style as your brand. Start by selecting those images that truly capture your newfound flair. Remember, it’s not about pleasing everyone—it’s about attracting the ones who get and cherish your aesthetic.

Showcasing Your Style

Your portfolio is your style’s home—decorate it wisely. Be cutthroat with your picks; each image is a representative of who you are as a lens-master. Only include the pieces that reflect your aesthetic, your voice. And remember, websites’ algorithms are a lot like gallery visitors—they reward the new and shiny. Refresh and update your online portfolio regularly to keep it feeling fresh and vital.

Just as a writer slowly but surely finds their voice through intricate storytelling, a photographer too unravels their style through a steady series of shots. And don’t forget, amid all the self-discerning and honing, the real thrill is in the journey itself. Could the hunt for your unique style actually be your style? Only one way to find out.

Dive in, swim around, and let your style find you.