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The different shots and angles every photographer should know

From the creation of the very first camera, all the way to modern day where many of us have smartphones with built-in high-resolution cameras, taking photographs has become almost part of daily culture. 

Capturing memories and moments that will forever be frozen in time seems like one of the closest things to real life magic and has grown considerably as an art form throughout the years. Our British neighbours over at Britannica even take us through an extensive history of photography, from humble beginnings to photography of the modern day.

Professional photography is now pretty much common practice in all aspects of media, whether advertising, film and creative work, editorial and journalistic pieces. Photography seems to be the world’s number one way to make an impact; a picture is worth a thousand words, as they say.

Photography brings people together, showing us parts of the world and of society that we perhaps never would have been exposed to otherwise. It allows us to share experiences and evoke change and can inspire us to help and fight and create.

Pretty neat, huh?

We think so too. And in the spirit of sharing, we want to share with you our handy little guide to the different shots and angles that every photographer should know, as well as further information into different photography styles.

Types of photography shots

Close-up – a close-up shot does what it says on the tin, framing and focusing in closely on the person or object in the shot to give us a better look

Extreme close-up – extreme close-ups are essentially a super close-up, often focusing on a specific part of the face, texture, section of an object or space etc. Extreme close-ups act almost as a microscope to get us closer to what has been captured, and can give an insightful and dramatic effect

Medium shot – also known as waist shots, are exactly what they say; a medium distance camera shot

Long shot – long shots are often used to capture large areas of space and to show us people or objects within their surrounding setting or environment. These shots lend themselves particularly well to landscape photography

Extreme long shot – similarly to an extreme close-up, this is basically the opposite; the shot is taken from a further distance to create a uniquely framed shot

Different levels (shoulder, hip, knee, ground etc) – this is where you can get creative with shots – you can explore different levels of shot, seeing which gives the best or more unique perspective depending on your subject

Types of photography angles

High angle – involves capturing images from an above perspective; often seen in fantasy or superhero film and imagery

Birdseye – exactly that! An above angle shot which looks directly down on the subject matter, as though the camera were a bird looking down at the world

Over the shoulder – often used when photographing two or more people, this angle literally involves taking a photograph over the shoulder of someone or something – focusing in on the reaction of the person they are talking to of the scene that is set before them

Face to face – often used to capture two individuals from a profile angle as they interact; you will have seen this angle many a time in rom coms!

Dutch angle/tilt – Dutch angle or tilt shots are a fairly unique way of shooting. Often used in action films, this angle offers a tilted effect which lends itself particularly well to moments of confusion or fear

Low angle – shooting from a low angle, often to create dramatic effect of enhance the size or scope of a person, object or place

Our US neighbours over at Polar Pro go into further detail about the different types of shots and angles, what they are commonly used for and the effects that they can achieve.

Now you’re in the know about creating different perspectives, here are 10 types of photography which have gained increased popularity in recent years – do any take our fancy?

Types of photography angles infographic

10 Types of Photography

  • Portrait – capturing each unique face for a multitude of mediums
  • Landscape – focusing in on the beauty of the natural world, as well as city life and various communities
  • Wildlife – getting up close and personal with the animal kingdom
  • Photojournalism – allowing us to capture the happenings of the world to help educate and evoke change
  • Travel – helping others to see the world, and inspire them to step out into it by showing them it’s wonders through captured images
  • Editorial – there will always be a call for a picture that is worth a thousand words and can enhance magazines and professional writing pieces
  • Architectural – big, small, tall, short, modern, unique; buildings have become extremely innovative in their design and there is a demand to capture these beautiful places
  • Food – making food look as delicious as it tastes!
  • Fashion – capturing the beauty and handiwork of all the latest styles, from catwalk and red carpet events to magazine pieces
  • Wedding and Events – one of the most in-demand industries of the moment, now more than ever people are seeking unique and interesting photography styles and vibes to capture their special day
Types of photography shots infographic

Our photography courses

Liking the sound of a career in photography? Why not get started with a photography certification! We offer 5 brilliant courses in photography, each focusing on different styles and sectors of the industry:

  • Photography – let’s start with the basics: you will learn everything you need to know about camera parts, shots and angles, creating a portfolio and so much more. This is the perfect course for any budding photographer
  • Portrait Photography – an extremely popular style of photography, often called upon for fashion and cosmetics, editorial and creative work, as well as headshots and portraiture for industry professionals and creative artistic endeavours, in addition to special occasions. This course will equip you will the knowledge and keen eye for capturing each unique face
  • Photography Business – the perfect course to help you get to grips with the practicalities of running a photography business, as well as supporting you in building your portfolio and reaching out to potential clients
  • Professional Photography – the student will become the master! By the end of this course you will fully equipped with all the professional industry-level know how to thrive in a career as a professional photographer
  • Wildlife Photography – considered one of the most magical and rewarding forms of photography, you will learn how to capture the essence of some of the world’s weirdest and most wonderful creatures, getting up close and personal to animal worlds you otherwise would never have encountered

These courses will teach you just how the photography professionals do it. Through a combination of unit workbooks, video tutorials and exercises, you will learn how to build and hone your skills in logical steps, ensuring that you are equipped with all the tools you will need to succeed in a photography career.

We will take you through all the need-to-know basics such as lighting, aperture, shutter speed, appropriate lenses for different projects, as well as making sure you are up to speed with the processes that take place post photography session, editing with Photoshop and Lightroom to make your photos the best they can be. 

Best of all, you will learn how to capture magic – the people you meet, the places you go, the natural wonders that make themselves known…with your camera at your side, the possibilities are endless.

These industry-leading courses have been professionally developed and will put you in the best possible place to start a career in the photography sector. Whether you have an organisation in mind that you have always dreamed of working for, or you want to set up your own business which puts you in the driver’s seat of your photography themes and photography salary, it is our job to help you reach your fullest potential.

All of our photography courses include a DSLR camera for you to use for the duration of your training, making sure you have the right gear to capture those magic moments. All courses also come with a downloadable course brochure and further information about our online learning system, module breakdowns, tutor support and payment plans.

Completing a photography certification online will have you snapping your way to success in no time!


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