Know­ing about mod­ern pho­to trends is not only about being “in the know” and shoot­ing “like every­one else”. By under­stand­ing the trends, you can trans­form them, adjust them to your own vision and get inter­est­ing shots. We have col­lect­ed for you the trends in pho­tog­ra­phy in 2022, and also fig­ured out which retouch­ing trends have set­tled down this year.

Pho­to trends are a great source of inspi­ra­tion when it seems that there is noth­ing left to shoot and no ideas / pixabay.com

Photography Trends 2022

1. Col­or of the year. For 2022, the Pan­tone Col­or Insti­tute has cho­sen Very Peri (laven­der) as its col­or of the year. As planned, through­out the year this col­or will be often used in cloth­ing, design, inte­ri­or decor, acces­sories, etc.

Pan­tone Col­or of the Year 2022 / Screen­shot from www.pantone.com

Take advan­tage of this — be in the main­stream, add the col­or of the year to your pho­to series. Or maybe you want to spec­u­late about what this col­or feels like for you per­son­al­ly?

2. Delib­er­ate neg­li­gence in stu­dio and fash­ion pho­tog­ra­phy. Pro­trud­ing wires, light sources in the frame, scratch­es from shoes on an uncleaned back­ground in post-pro­cess­ing — this used to be con­sid­ered a hack and a dis­ad­van­tage, but now it has turned into a “chip” that delib­er­ate­ly deprives the pho­to of “glossy” and ide­al­i­ty.

Often such a “care­less” back­ground enhances the impres­sion of the frame and makes it more inter­est­ing / Author: Mak­sim Gustarev / Source: 35awards.com

3. Nat­ur­al loca­tion. Often pho­tog­ra­phers refuse ster­ile and face­less stu­dio inte­ri­ors and con­duct pho­to shoots in the most ordi­nary apart­ment rent­ed for a day. More­over, the spread is huge and depends on the idea: it can be a lux­u­ri­ous design­er apart­ment or an apart­ment with a “grand­moth­er’s ren­o­va­tion” for styl­ized shoot­ing in the aes­thet­ics of the 90s. Now any place can be turned into a stu­dio — just bring light with you, and move the fur­ni­ture for a bet­ter com­po­si­tion.

How to styl­ize pho­to shoots we told here.

4. Col­or. Now there is a trend towards care­ful study of col­or in the frame. Pho­tog­ra­phers look at col­or com­bi­na­tions in advance, select the model’s clothes, loca­tion and plan col­or cor­rec­tion. It can even be quite abstract, blur­ry pic­tures, but the col­or on them will still be bright and rich, draw­ing all the atten­tion to itself.

5. Neon. Until now, in com­mer­cial por­trait shoot­ings, the trend for pho­to shoots with col­ored con­trast­ing light is rel­e­vant, as if the mod­el is walk­ing among neon signs along the cramped streets of Tokyo.

Neon shoot­ings attract with bright­ness and rich­ness of col­ors / Pho­to: Eliza­ve­ta Chechevit­sa

Remark­ably, the neon effect can be obtained both in the most bud­getary stu­dio with the help of two reflec­tors with col­or fil­ters, and walk­ing along the city streets in the evening. Although in the sec­ond case, con­stant LED light, which can shine in any RGB col­or, can addi­tion­al­ly help. For exam­ple, a lightsaber.

6. Mixed light. This is a com­bi­na­tion of a con­stant light source and a pulsed one. If you pho­to­graph with such light at a slow shut­ter speed, you can get an inter­est­ing effect: on the one hand, the mod­el is “frozen”, as the flash froze it, but also a col­ored trail stretch­es around it, which is obtained due to the com­bi­na­tion of con­stant light, slow shut­ter speed and the move­ment of the mod­el or a pho­tog­ra­ph­er.

Mixed light is often used in por­trait and fash­ion shoots / Pho­to: Eliza­ve­ta Chechevit­sa

How to make mixed light and what it is, read the text.

7. Min­i­mal­ism. Old-new trend in art pho­tog­ra­phy. Fash­ion is cycli­cal, so now there is a new revival of this con­cept. Pho­tog­ra­phers try to leave a min­i­mum of details and objects on the can­vas, but tie them into some­thing whole with the help of com­po­si­tion.

In archi­tec­tur­al pho­tog­ra­phy, one more trend is added to min­i­mal­ism — abstrac­tion / Author: Sylvester Wong Hsiang Hui / Source: 35awards.com

8. “Pic­ture” style in por­traits and fash­ion shoots. Social net­works are flood­ed with pho­tos that look like paint­ings of the past. Pho­tog­ra­phers try to con­vey col­or and light, the com­po­si­tion of por­traits, styl­ize the image of the mod­el under past eras. Allu­sions to well-known paint­ings are also good now.

Author: Pey­man Naderi / Source: 35awards.com

9. The abun­dance of props in com­mer­cial film­ing. It is not uncom­mon for a pho­tog­ra­ph­er to have their own dress­ing room with armor, or he/she makes the props him­self. Clients want unusu­al images “not like every­one else” and not waste time, while pho­tog­ra­phers want to stand out. That is why in 2022, pho­to projects are in trend in fash­ion, where the mod­el comes to the fin­ished image, col­lect­ed by the pho­tog­ra­ph­er.

10. Pas­tel warm col­ors in wom­en’s and chil­dren’s por­traits. In these areas, brown, sepia are rel­e­vant for col­or cor­rec­tion. More­over, if ear­li­er the skin was sought to be sat­u­rat­ed, to cre­ate the effect of a tan, now it is in the past.

11. Hard light in male por­traits. In men’s pho­tographs, it is still impor­tant to empha­size strength, bru­tal­i­ty, char­ac­ter. That’s what hard light is for. Also, such light empha­sizes the relief of the skin, wrin­kles, scars, which is impor­tant for a male por­trait, where all these ele­ments are not removed dur­ing retouch­ing, but rather tend to be empha­sized.

12. Lev­i­ta­tion in food pho­tog­ra­phy. Soar­ing tea bags, ham­burg­er buns, let­tuce. This is achieved through edit­ing in post-pro­cess­ing and shoot­ing from tripods. Yes, this great­ly increas­es the lev­el of com­plex­i­ty of shoot­ing — you need to not only think over the per­fect com­po­si­tion, as before, but also take a lot of shots, which then need to be com­bined.

The result looks spec­tac­u­lar, dynam­ic and fan­tas­tic. These are the pic­tures that the own­er of a restau­rant or cafe will buy for his adver­tis­ing / Author: Yas­min alba­toul / Source: 35awards.com

13. Scenic com­po­si­tions in food pho­tog­ra­phy. The sec­ond food pho­tog­ra­phy trend is com­plex, rich­ly detailed pho­tographs that refer to pic­turesque still lifes and repeat paint­ings in col­or and com­po­si­tion.

Every detail has been worked out in the pho­to, the loca­tion of objects has been ver­i­fied, and in com­po­si­tion and col­or it resem­bles a paint­ing / Author: Eduar­do Mod­olo / Source: 35awards.com

14. Black and white in street pho­tog­ra­phy. An eter­nal trend that flows from year to year. This is under­stand­able — in street pho­tog­ra­phy, the empha­sis is on emo­tion, action, scene, and col­or can only dis­tract the view­er.

15. Ver­ti­cal fram­ing. Pho­tog­ra­phy is adapt­ing to the fact that users spend most of their time on the Inter­net through mobile devices. Hor­i­zon­tal and square shots are still present, but they are not so con­ve­nient to view on the phone, post in sto­ries, cut into short videos.

Photo processing trends

1. Film pro­cess­ing. Grain in the pho­to, which delib­er­ate­ly reduces the qual­i­ty and makes the pic­ture look like “antique”.

Reduced sat­u­ra­tion or b/w, blur, vignette. All these ele­ments will help to styl­ize a pho­to under the film / Author: Sergey Gaylet / Source: 35awards.com

2. Nat­u­ral­ness in face retouch­ing. Now pho­tog­ra­phers are aban­don­ing the ide­al “porce­lain” skin, devoid of all flaws, wrin­kles, and at the same time pores. Also, do not whiten your teeth and eyes to the state of a white A4 sheet.

3. Nat­ur­al col­ors where appro­pri­ate. Nat­ur­al col­ors are, first of all, the cor­rect white bal­ance, when the clouds are white, not green, and the gray asphalt does not cast pur­ple.

Nat­u­ral­ly, if you are pho­tograph­ing in a stu­dio with col­or fil­ters or near a neon sign, then the col­ors, on the con­trary, need to be empha­sized.

4. Preser­va­tion of cor­rect anato­my and mim­ic wrin­kles. Nasolabi­al folds, crow’s feet — in 2022, all this can be left. The max­i­mum is to slight­ly light­en these areas, there­by mak­ing wrin­kles less deep.

5. Reduced sat­u­ra­tion to get mut­ed pas­tel palettes.

The mod­el’s skin tone is almost gray / Author: Amin Hos­sei­ni / Source: 35awards.com

6. Per­fec­tion in prod­uct and food pho­tog­ra­phy. Here, on the con­trary, there is a trend towards detailed retouch­ing, the study of each pix­el of the pho­to, so that the pic­ture looks as “deli­cious, rep­re­sen­ta­tive and effec­tive in adver­tis­ing as pos­si­ble.

7. Depar­ture from warm col­or cor­rec­tion, orange skin towards cold col­ors. The tan effect and orange skin trend has been replaced by a desire for more neu­tral, nat­ur­al and calm col­ors.

Regard­less of what pho­tos are trend­ing right now, remem­ber that the main trend is the indi­vid­u­al­i­ty of the pho­tog­ra­ph­er and his look. If you can offer your own, unusu­al vision, you should not refuse it. The audi­ence is always drawn to what stands out from the gen­er­al stream.