I remember how, when I was a teenager, I could open a fashion magazine and find a section about this season’s trends. If white pants were a trend, you could go ahead and buy the pants because, for at least a year, you would be a fashionista. With globalization and the fast pace of our lives now, trends don’t work like that anymore, especially in the fast-paced world of brand photography.

Trends are still there, and they can offer valuable inspiration. However, with how fast they are changing, simply following trends is not the most viable strategy for creating a lasting impact. The heart of effective brand photography lies in the story it tells and the emotional connection it fosters. It is always better to focus on deeper connections than on what’scurrently in vogue. But knowing trends and using them where they can amplify your story? Yes, please! So, let’s dive into observations and predictions for trends in 2024-2025.

A photo of Kate Klymenko next to a directors chair wearing sunglasses and looking into the camera
  1. Magic Nostalgia of Film Photography: Vintage is the New Black

Analog and film photography has been a significant trend for a few years now, and we’re seeing a new wave of its comeback again this year. Maybe it’s the vintage appeal that digital images often lack or the nostalgia for the ’80s and ’90sthat we see everywhere now. Or it’s the feeling of authenticity we seek in a world rapidly adopting AI. This trend highlights the beauty of imperfections and the organic feel of film.

Even though photos are often made with digital cameras and then edited to look like film photos, the essence remains. Additionally, the bare flash look, which has been with us for a while, seems to only change and adapt but not disappear. It looks like it will stay with us for a while as well.

2. AI and Hyperrealism

    Following closely behind the trend of “real” film photography is the rise of Artificial Intelligence, especially in product photography, which pushes the boundaries of hyperrealism and vibrant color palettes. This trend leverages elements that cannot be easily replicated in real life. We’re not talking about AI-generated kittens for quirky Facebook posts, but meticulously designed, AI-enhanced photos with high-end retouching. The result? Striking, eye-catching images that truly stand out.

    3. Yes to Diversity and Gender-Neutral Fashion

      The movement towards gender-neutral fashion and styling continues to grow. This trend emphasizes diversity, showcasing a wide range of identities, including non-binary and gender-fluid individuals. Representation extends to various ethnicities, ages, body types, and abilities, ensuring that brand photography is inclusive and reflective of our diverse world.

      Pause for a moment and think about it: Is your branding inclusive? Are you sure you have representation, or is there a group of people who might feel neglected? If potential clients don’t see anyone like them in your branding photos, they might take their business elsewhere.

      4. Natural Poses and the Human Touch

      Contrary to the hyperrealism trend, there’s a growing appreciation for natural poses and the human touch in photography. Authentic, candid moments that capture real emotions and interactions are becoming increasingly valued.

      Yes, all those intentionally blurry photos we’ve seen over the past couple of years are falling into this category. This trend highlights the beauty of imperfection and the genuine connections between people, offering a more relatable and heartfelt portrayal.

      We can see brands using this trend by photographing models in casual, everyday locations and capturing carefully curated”imperfect” photos. The most important thing? It works.

      5.Cinematic Narration

        Cinematic narration in photography draws inspiration from movies and short video forms, which is currently the most consumed type of content. This trend involves telling a story through photography, whether it’s through the expression of a subject, a suggestive setting, or props that hint at a larger narrative. Emphasizing small details adds authenticity and depth, creating compelling images that draw viewers into a visual tale.

        A Couple of Words About What Not to Do

        Disclaimer: You do you. While I always offer my expertise and recommendations, it’s ultimately you who decides for your brand. However, here are some trends that are on their way out and might make your branding look dated.

        • Low Exposure Trend: Frankly, I’m glad to see this one go. There are just so few instances where dull and lifeless photos can look good. This trend is finally on its way out, and you want to avoid it if you don’t want your content to look outdated like that Instagram feeds that use the same orange and teal preset for everything. Ouch.
        • Two-Color Lighting: This specific trend was overused by beauty experts. While fun and creative lighting will always have its place, it’s better to opt for more natural and balanced lighting for a general mood.
        • Quiet Luxury and Ideal (Sad) Beige: The polished, beige-centric look is shifting towards more organic and truthful visuals. Audiences crave authenticity and images that reflect real life rather than an unattainable ideal.

        Summary

        In 2024-2025, the blend of vintage aesthetics, AI advancements, inclusivity, natural authenticity, and cinematic storytelling will shape the future of brand photography. Balancing these trends while avoiding outdated styles ensures your branding remains fresh and impactful. Let me know what trend is your favorite! 

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