Lifestyle photography sounded super fancy when I was first introduced to the term: maybe it was because I associated the term “lifestyle” with the 1980’s classic Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous ; however, I quickly learned that “lifestyle photography” is pretty much the opposite of that pretentious snobbery. Lifestyle photography is just capturing everyday moments of life in an authentic way. This is the opposite of “smile at the camera” portraiture that’s been around for years. Instead, photogs are attempting to capture the interaction between family members.
Personally, I’m here for it 100%. I photograph a lot of young children, and I find they’re more into the sessions as well. Lifestyle photographers typically give their clients something “to do”, whether that be play ring around the rosie, have a tickle fight, or slither like snakes (yes, I’ve done this and the photos were AMAZING). Sessions then become an experience and memory in and of themselves, which ads to the preciousness of those photos.
It is a little different from the everyday snapshots that people capture on their cell phones, though, in that we photographers do try to think of ourselves as artists as well. We look at the different angles, the background, and the details to best capture the full scene. Furthermore, there’s a bit more direction that goes into my sessions than simply “dance”. I do pose families somewhat, and then give them prompts to make them interact and play–while being super flexible and not requiring an expected outcome. This better ensures pleasing photos while still having a fun time.