Press Enter / Return to begin your search.

22 thoughts on “Developing Your Own Photographic Style”

  1. Hey Michelle,

    Thank you for your blog. Besides taking photo’s you can also write very well. I’m in the grey area right now. I’m certainly going to use some tips!

  2. Oh come on. Just tell us which Vsco filter you’re using. You are using the same filter for a while and people just want to know this info.

    1. You’re welcome to download the VSCO packs and find one that works for you, I used them years ago when they first launched but I no longer do. (I only occasionally use them for the odd selfie or food post taken on my phone which I post in my stories). I have developed my own Lightroom presets and I grade each one of my street shots individually using these presets I made as a foundation. I also have Lightroom CC on my phone. Like I mentioned – there is no preset that’s going to work for every single photo, you need to teach yourself how to edit and adjust according to each photograph. So no, it’s not the same filter, I learnt how to grade consistently. There’s no filter for that.

      If you do want presets I’m sure there’s tons out there that will make you happy, and I have been considering releasing a pack – but I think it defeats the point of developing your own look.

  3. Are you shooting film too? If yes which film stock do you prefer? Doing myself Streetphotography and recently included film camera into my gear. Its quite relaxing and a totaly different feeling, oposite to digital. It makes you think more, shoot less, pay more attention to details like framing, composition, perspective, light… It maybe won’t make me a better photographer but it brings me more joy and that’s what matters the most, right…

    1. Hi Nenad! I have shot a lot of film, but at the moment I’m more focused on digital. I love shooting film and it’s a beautiful thing to learn. My fav black and white stocks are Tri-X, TMAX400 and Acros – Acros an TMAX400 being my favourite because they are high in contrast. Colour film stocks I love Ektar (it renders reds and punchy moods very well) and Portra for skin tones!

  4. Hey Michelle! I’ve been photographing for more than a year now and it’s kinda frustrating to look for a style that suits me; especially when I see photographers posting in their Instagram accounts great photos and creative flows with the same style over and over again. Not sure if that made sense but your article is great and I hope someday I’ll be able to discover my own style! Keep rocking! Following you closely in IG!

    1. Hi Mark! So glad that you enjoyed it! It took me a long time to find something that I liked, so don’t worry too much about it, it’ll happen! So long as you’re enjoy taking photographs and learning as you go the rest doesn’t matter much and will happen organically.

  5. Thank you so much. I just totally asked you about this too. Ha ha. Well wrote and it’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who feels this way. Love it, keep up the amazing work and thanks again!!

  6. This is great Michelle! You’re a massive inspiration to me. When I’m feeling a bit uninspired, your account is one of the ones I go to to get a burst of inspo. I also couldn’t agree more on getting photography books to look through and learn from. I have a bundle lined up for pay day.

    I’m currently working on developing my own style. I went on holiday to Spain recently and I spent the entire time glued to my camera, and walked around listening to music and just shooting what I saw and felt. I pushed myself to go out of my comfort zone and created little projects (eg shadows, reflections or pattern spotting). I also relaxed and just shot away, not worrying about always having to ‘nail it’. So I came home with over 1000 photos, and sure enough there are a lot of duds. But there are some little gems and some of these shots are my best yet, IMHO, because they feel a bit more like ‘me’. I’m also refining my editing style. But I still have a long way to go!

    Keep doing what you’re doing, and I hope to get the chance to shoot with you one day. x

    1. Thank you so much Laura, I really appreciate that. I also love to walk around with music, it makes a huge difference too. Get lost in your own mind and just take photo’s without overthinking anything!! It’s the best. Hoped you loved Spain, it’s an incredible place.

  7. Great post Michelle. Inspiring, well written and also a relief to know thay even a pro like you returns home with out of focus and disappointing shots! Developing my own style seems so elusive, but there are great tips here to keep going.
    Looking forward to your editing post.

  8. Thank you so much for this! I needed to hear(read) this. I’m in search of my own style and feeling lost in the editing world. I know how I want my style to be but I just can’t get it right yet. Very lost of category, too. (I want to shoot portrait but I love street photography and landscapes and ahhhh everything I see!) Frustrated and feel not talented because I don’t have any followers in my Instagram feeds. But the bottom line is, I love taking photos. Photography gives me joy. Your blog gave my a confident back that it’s ok and believe myself and just enjoy. I won’t stop learning but I’ll trust my guts and creativity. So thanks!

    1. Hi Meg! Thank you so much for reading, a lot of what you’re dealing with was the same for me when I started taking photos. You also don’t have to place yourself into a category – platforms like Instagram / 500px / Flickr are all wonderful communities, but we get stuck in this idea that we need to pick a genre and stay in a lane because that’s what we see others do. But I believe that we need to shoot, post, and put work out there that makes us happy and makes us feel something. That’s all that matters and it’s okay if they’re not all one thing! Do it because it makes you happy – that’s what matters.

  9. Dear Michelle, I just stumbled upon your Instagram, which is fantastic!!
    And may I say that i am very happy to have found you, especially because of this blog you have written, thank you so very much! And looking forward to more beautiful blogs and photos!
    Best regards from Greece!

    1. Ah thank you so much Nathalie! I’m really glad that you enjoyed the blog post, and I truly appreciate the feedback! Best regards from South Africa!

Leave a Reply

  • “Facing Futures: Portraits in Time and Place“ 
16 - 30 September 2020

@barnard_gallery is pleased to announce the @artsy Viewing Room ‘Facing Futures: Portraits in Time and Place’. 

The viewing room includes a selection of images and works by selected artists and photographers from various contexts that consider and acknowledge our shared humanity as we face the future, dreaming of a brighter tomorrow. 

Participating artists include Tshepiso Seleke (Johannesburg), Michelle Viljoen (Cape Town), Michelle Sank (London), Viet Ha Tran (Vietnam), Justine Tjallinks (Amsterdam), Justin Dingwall (Johannesburg), Alastair Whitton (Cape Town), Miriam Tölke (Berlin), John Baloyi (Johannesburg), Kevin Mackintosh (London), Lien Botha (Cape Town), Richard Mudariki (Cape Town), Tom Cullberg (Cape Town), Maria Torp (Copenhagen) and Katherine Spindler (Cape Town).

Link in bio

____

@mich_viljoen is a Cape Town based street photographer and the creative director of Studio Co. Drawn to large cities her work has taken her to the global capitals of New York, London and Tokyo amongst others.

Possessing an acute awareness of the space between moments, she documents cities and the people who make them their home. Her images reflect the intertwined dissonances between people and society as they evolve together within the urban field.

Sometimes she's close, sometimes she's distant, but she is never detached from her subjects and the daily realities of contemporary life in various vast and sprawling metropoles.

Refracted, 2018
Archival print on Hahnemuhle photo rag baryta
118.9 × 84.1 cm
Edition of 3

 #photography #hopesanddreams #barnardgallery #rawurbanshots #fatalframes #streetshared #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #theimaged #streetselect #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #newyork #streetphotography #challengerstreets #life_is_street #capturestreets #streetlife_award #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #ourstreets
  • In the details

___

New York

#rawurbanshots #fatalframes #streetshared #agameoftones #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #streetscenemag #theimaged #streetselect #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #newyork #everybodystreet #streetphotography #challengerstreets #life_is_street #capturestreets #streetlife_award #urbanstreetphotogallery #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #ourstreets
  • Into the light

___

New York

#rawurbanshots #fatalframes #streetshared #agameoftones #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #streetscenemag #theimaged #streetselect #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #newyork #everybodystreet #streetphotography #challengerstreets #life_is_street #capturestreets #streetlife_award #urbanstreetphotogallery #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #ourstreets
  • “Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” — Terry Pratchett

_____

Japan

#rawurbanshots #fatalframes #streetshared #agameoftones #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #streetscenemag #theimaged #streetselect #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #japan #everybodystreet #streetphotography #challengerstreets #life_is_street #capturestreets #streetlife_award #urbanstreetphotogallery #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #ourstreets
  • “The unreal is more powerful than the real. Because nothing is as perfect as you can imagine it. Because its only intangible ideas, concepts, beliefs, fantasies that last. Stone crumbles. Wood rots. People, well, they die. But things as fragile as a thought, a dream, a legend, they can go on and on. If you can change the way people think. The way they see themselves. The way they see the world. You can change the way people live their lives. That's the only lasting thing you can create. “ — Chuck Palahniuk

____

Hong Kong

#rawurbanshots #streetphotographyworldwide #streetphotographerscommunity #agameoftones #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #illgrammers #theimaged #urbanandstreet #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #hongkong #thosenewyorkstreets #streetphotography #challengerstreets #fatalframes #streetmobs #streetlife_award #urbanstreetphotogallery #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #thecreatorclass
  • If only there are enough books to forever escape in. 

___

New York

#rawurbanshots #fatalframes #streetshared #agameoftones #thestreetphotographyhub #streets_vision #streetclassics #moodygrams #canon #worldstreetgeneration #streetscenemag #theimaged #streetselect #streetleaks #streetmagazine #streetdreamsmag #newyork #everybodystreet #streetphotography #challengerstreets #life_is_street #capturestreets #streetlife_award #urbanstreetphotogallery #myspc #streetweekly #spicollective #createcommune #capturestreets #ourstreets

mich_viljoen @ Instagram

%d bloggers like this: