People often hear the term “photojournalist style” wedding photography when searching through the endless wedding photography websites. It seems like everyone’s a photojournalist these days.
What does it mean? Why is it important?
Anyone can say they’re a photojournalist. It’s not like being a medical doctor or FBI agent. A person with little to no training can buy a camera at Costco, pay for a website, and say they’re a photojournalist. It’s just that easy. Nobody is checking their credentials. The only way to check is to look at the pictures and judge for yourself. Luckily for these photojournalists, not many people really know what to look for in the pictures to make that judgment.
A handful of people have a natural eye and a gift for making amazing pictures. I love looking at and studying their work. They could walk into any situation and make absolutely beautiful pictures. Others, like me, went to photojournalism schools to study the craft. Some of us worked at newspapers to really hone our skillset. I worked at newspapers for 15 years to get good at the art form.
It actually took me a couple years of doing weddings to get used to adapting true photojournalism to wedding style photography. It’s a wedding style subset of photojournalism. I don’t really think of it as true photojournalism. It’s more a fashion style of photography. I get more wedding photography ideas studying the pictures in Vogue than the New York Times.
I did the crazy picture in this post while still a student at San Francisco State. Your wedding will most likely not have sirens, tear gas, yelling, and everything that goes with a riot. Maybe it will. I would love to be there if so.
Study the work and work history of the wedding photographers. Very few have pictures like this in their portfolios. Pictures like these show a photographer ready for absolutely any situation who are able to stay working and making nice pictures.