Hottest Photography Trends of 2021

It is common knowledge that the 2020 Corona Virus Pandemic caused significant disruptions in the lives of all people. Photographers were also affected and had to conform to the new lockdown regulations and restrictions. Typically, photographers often earn income through events such as weddings and other special events. However, cancellations of these revenue-generating opportunities led to a reduction of income and photo shoots.

Currently, countries are continuing with restrictions to control the pandemic, but there is hope for expected resumption later in 2021. One of the measures is the current vaccination programs, which will ensure that you go back to your plans much sooner. The primary aim of vaccination campaigns is to lower the virus spread for normalcy to return. Therefore, every person in 2021 will strive to develop trends to get back their economic livelihoods.

There is a ray of hope for photographers as the world is opening back up to normalcy. By doing what they know best, the photographers will return to their livelihood in 2021. However, it is crucial to take advantage of new trends in photography. Serious professionals should invest more in outdoor photography, self-portraits, and nature photography. By understanding what buyers are looking for, photographers can find new areas of potential income. Below are the top photography trends for 2021.

Social Distance Capturing

Since last year, social distancing has been the primary campaign in reducing the spread of the virus. The experts have advised on being two meters away from one another. However, this issue has been a challenge, more so the isolation that people are experiencing.

Using silhouette images is an ideal way of depicting the emotions of isolation and separation. The image clearly and powerfully showcases the raw anguish and despair within the community. Presently, capturing social distancing images that depict real people resonates well.


Masked Up

When the pandemic hit, faces changed as we had to wear masks. Therefore, seeing people normally was not the case. However, portraits remained the same. Currently, everyone is putting on masks whenever you are capturing people for stock or street photography. It is surprising to see many people standing next to one another without wearing masks.

For photographers, it is necessary to find a way of embracing and conforming to the new normal. It is essential to find ways of acknowledging beauty since photos have a notable timestamp. Notably, there is increased demand for refreshed publicity and stock images with individuals wearing masks. Such images will make a website look fresh and current.

Self Portraits and Family Photos

At present, finding subjects for photo sessions has massively grown small. In 2021, having a photoshoot with unknown individuals is a bit strange and less likely. Besides, safety measures are another element photographers did not worry about a year ago but are most critical today. Because of the precautions required during the photoshoot, working with those close to us is more convenient when reducing the virus spread. Therefore, having those close to us as our subjects is the preferred method.

As a result, one of the most popular trends this year is the classic self-portrait. You are having your siblings and parents as the subject is now a fairway. Additionally, full pet portraits are also on the rise. Therefore, it is appropriate to keep practicing and ensure that your equipment is adequately maintained and in good shape. The result is having a continuously fresh portfolio and taking more pictures. For great poses for portrait photography, there are some ideas to ponder. Having great portrait photography requires a combination of relevant style and artistic expressions. There are some relevant ideas still available.

Food and Still Life Photography

If you find portrait work to a bit more challenging, you can try out still-life images. Still-life photos can be astounding since you can use anything handy and be creative. Once you concentrate on the type of aesthetic you intend to produce, you will think critically and get results. Additionally, still-life images do not require a specific place for their creation, and they can be of any subject.

Due to its convenience, creating still-life images is popular this year. Creating such photographs is a suitable way to maintain your craft, notwithstanding the nature of the shoot. Some practical subjects you can consider for this photography are food, products, fantasy scenes, toys, and a bowl of fruits


Less Polished, More Raw Realism

Notably, the coronavirus disruptions also brought new visual perspectives. The lockdown restrictions made most people accept and appreciate the real world. As a result, people are more into raw realism photography as compared to the previous years. The fantasy life is currently rare as we have experienced a world that seemed more like a fantasy itself.

Therefore, currently, photography should focus more on realism. However, this does not imply less post-production furnishing but a different aesthetic style. Now, you will find that things are of more tenacity as if we had seen the dark side of the world.

However, the work should not only showcase the darkness and difficulties over this pandemic period. Using natural beauty with rugged realism does the best job of depicting the authenticity of the subject.

You should not worry more about finding a unique photographic style since it only involves trial and error. When experimenting with this style, you should focus on the subject and the shot itself.  The photography should be in line with the website for sharing the images. Additionally, the platform should also add elegance to the photos. You can consider the photography portfolio websites that are available on Pixpa as they are excellent. Besides, you can check out the work of experts in terms of their creativity in coming up with the platforms. Looking at what others do will help you to grasp more ways of improving your website.


UAVs are some of the top photography trends in 2021. They are commonly referred to as drones and are almost everywhere. Additionally, they are effective in photography and even for smaller models.

However, when using drones, it is vital to comprehend the rules and regulations on their usage. An example of this is the FAA of the United States, where aviation authority controls their use. Surprisingly, many photographers are not well informed about such rules, and this may hamper their activities.

In some instances, you will need a license and register your drone before operating it. When in a foreign country, it is vital to get permission from the authorities at any moment when handling a drone. Drones are not going anywhere, but their regulations are often changing, and you are responsible for understanding all local laws.

For the past two years, drone photography has been on the rise due to its popularity. Many people today prefer using drones for all their outdoor photography. When using them, you should avoid crowded places. There are tips available on using such equipment.

The bird’s eye view and straight-down shot are the particular aesthetic trends resulting from drone photography. The images from such shots are often elegant, especially when framed without a horizon. The photos are also unique and fresh as it captures some of the details difficult to see from the ground.


Outdoors and Nature Photography

Taking a walk in the woods is a suitable way to social distance hence the high number of people visiting national parks in the US.  Currently, it is easier for people to alter their schedules to get the outdoor experience and work outside. By doing this, you will be surprised at learning new things.

Different kinds of enthusiastic photographers are using photography drones to take nature images. Other shutterbugs often take such an opportunity to improve their art and form. Regardless of your preference, nature photography is simply rewarding. It has great experience, and the pictures are not the primary concern in such circumstances.

While deciding on the appropriate time to take your pictures, you should first be aware of the nature of the photos you intend to take, which will involve the mood of the image and the type of subjects. All these details are artistic decisions, and it will depend on your creativity and technical capacity to handle your equipment.

Photography on the Environment

Since we have spent a lot of time indoors during the lockdown, many people appreciate the beauty of the outdoors. However, it is necessary to be worried about the environment because of global warming. Notably, photographers can be instrumental in bringing change through public awareness. They can achieve this by taking photos of the damages being done and sharing them with the world.

The photographers can realize this by depicting the endangered areas by increasing sea levels, poverty, and drought, human activities causing mass extinctions. With clear pictures, photography can bring change by creating awareness. Additionally, taking photos of the environment is necessary since some features will not be present forever.


Activism Photography

Photography can also bring impact to other spheres of life through activism. Regardless of the course of action, you intend to take, getting a supporting organization is not impossible. However, it is vital to have passion for such an activity.

Most stock photographers often use social trends to know the prospective images that will fetch more in the market. In many circumstances, photos depicting diversity and integration always win big. Some of the trending topics are race issues, civil and gender rights, and issues dealing with discrimination of the marginalized. Additionally, gender issues, especially women empowerment, are also hot trends to expect this year.

Importantly, there is a discussion on incorporating more broader demographics into photography. The portraiture of photography can be effectively looked at by including people from all age groups. It also brings fun into this line of work. It will lead to depicting moments that are unexpected hence authentic. Such images are reliable in understanding more about the subject when compared to a posed portrait. With this trend, the main aim is to show human experience and advocate for the less fortunate in society. Therefore, it will appreciate and celebrate diversity globally.


Video and Cinemographs

It was necessary to have two cameras to take elegant images and record quality footage some years ago. However, today one DSLR digital camera can achieve optimal image capture and recording videos conveniently. Also, digital cameras can be affordable for many photographers.

With this new technology, photographers can conveniently achieve a lot. However, when taking a video, there are specialized skills that will be necessary. It is also essential to have some specified equipment for better results. Many photographers are today walking around with their cameras mounted in cages. They also have shotgun microphones and lighting for quality output.

Generally, the usage of the shot footages depends on your objectives. In 2021, cinematography has become a popular trend among photographers. They are still photos with some elements of motion. Such motions will typically make the image show on the screen. The small files are suitable for web designers to use and include in the web ads or the background of their sites.

Mobile Content

Mobile phones are competing today with cameras for consumer buying.  Smartphones are more advantageous since they are smaller and more portable than digital cameras, and the smartphone can perform a wide range of functions such as making phone calls, taking photos, shopping online, and more.  Therefore, cell phone manufacturers are producing smartphones with high-quality cameras to meet their market. Some companies are entirely in competition with the photographer business.

The result is that almost all content creators and influencers prefer to use their phones at any time. This is because of the phone’s ability to produce still images, 4K video, and quality sound. In the current market, most phones have up to four lenses and camera setups. Android and iPhone smartphones can also filter and edit any video. As a result, smartphones are effective in content creation, for example, YouTubers.

A quality smartphone is the best option unless a creator is interested in photography as an art form. Such developments have squeezed the camera-making companies, and they must improve their game. Notably, cameras are remarkable in their ways, but smartphones are compelling for routine shots.

The stock photography and commercial photography needs in the market can prove such assertions. Numerous stock websites have options for direct uploading from the phones, with vertical videos becoming more prominent.


Small Weddings and Events

Regarding wedding photography, most of these events are continuing during the pandemic. However, the number of attendants is much smaller than in previous years before Covid-19. There are some advantages to this in terms of focus on the essential aspects in gatherings such as weddings. The wedding day primarily focuses on the bride and the groom instead of full wedding parties.

Because of such modifications, numerous small ceremonies are happening globally. With the pandemic, extended families can also be part of your wedding but virtually, photos, or the stories of that day.

Events for corporates and concerts are still being organized but with Covid-19 restrictions in place. The level of traveling has also been affected. As a result, traveling photographers will need vaccine passports and resumption of holiday travel. However, home home-based photographers have boomed from the local events.

Applying Flamboyant Colors

Color is usually an essential aspect of any design. In photography, color has a massive effect, more so vivid ones. Specific colors such as neon lights, colored buildings, and saturated landscapes can lead to more attention to your work. In web design, such a trend is also effective.

One of the examples is the Pantone color of the year at Saffron, at 14- 1064. The conspicuous yellow-orange color is effective.


Minimalism and Surrealism

Minimalism refers to getting rid of the irrelevant aspects and refining the project effectively. It ensures that the conveyed message is direct and easy to comprehend. Minimalist images may seem bare, but that they are highly effective. Such images are attractive to many people and are also aesthetically appealing. Usually, they can conform to other designs.

However, surrealism tends to teach specific aspects of the other world into everyday events. It brings together the reality and subconscious mind. Some of the widely known surrealism painting artists are Salvador Dali and Rene Magritte.

A suitable starting point for surrealism is experimental photography, where non-traditional styles get the novel outcome. The blending is done during production or after. Usually, experimental photography relates to the Data art movement.

Products and Amazon

Taking photographs of products to sell on Amazon or other eCommerce platforms is very popular in 2021.  One of the essential considerations for product photography is the specific image requirements.  For example, if you are taking a photo of a displayed product on Amazon, it needs a white background.  There are many inexpensive kits available made explicitly for product photography.

Amazon and eBay have templates available, making the process easier but much of the work is in post-production.  The Product must be centered in the picture, and you will want nothing distracting from the Product itself.  Many Amazon sellers are looking for product photos because unique images are required, and it is against the terms of service for reusing images other sellers are using.    Even lighting is critical as shadows will distract against the product photo.  You can even list your services on websites such as Upwork or Fiverr and start bringing in money from those looking for quality photos of products.

Expanding to the Universe

Finally, many photographers are getting into photographing the stars, which is not about taking images of famous people.  Astronomers and cosmologists use telescopes to see what is happening in the Universe, and now it is possible to take photos with telescopes and binoculars.  It can be anything from time-lapsed images of meteor showers, the northern aurora lights, comets, stars, or planets.  To get the best quality photos, you will need to go outside the city because the lights of metropolitan areas take away from what is seen in the lens of a telescope.  Many magazines and online publications are willing to purchase good quality and exciting photographs of the heavens.  With COVID-19, there has been a renewed interest in activities that don’t require you near others and taking images of what is above us can be very interesting and unique.

With the pandemic starting in 2020, we learned a lot of things and the need for hope. Similarly, 2021 will come with its fair share of challenges. However, photography is an art that can adapt to these challenges and bring people globally close despite the social distancing issues. Many photographers are working during this pandemic to bring joy to people. Their actions can inspire us to travel still and bring change. With the above information, which trends are you expecting?

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