Photo trends for 2014

What photo trends can we expect for 2014? - Robert Hauser

Photography trends come and go, and it’s the job of Rebecca Swift, Head of Creative Planning at photography stock site iStock by Getty Images, to run global research projects identifying these latest visual trends. So what does this year have in store? “2014 will be the year of lens flare,” says Rebecca. “It is everywhere – movies, TV shows, fashion and advertising. What was previously a technical error is now the visual representation of the era”. Rebecca also suggests that the demand for travel and action photography could increase over the next 12 months. “We’re no longer excited by flash cars and the latest flatscreen TVs. Money spent on travel, special days out and learning new skills has brought about an aspiration to see imagery that represents ‘doing’ rather than ‘owning’”.

Attitudes towards women and different ethnicities will also have an impact on the type of portraits being taken, particularly for advertising. “More realistic views of women in fashion and beauty advertising is a perpetual issue that is not going to disappear in 2014,” says Rebecca. “However, the way we visualise this diversity of women will be represented through an increasing number of variables: age range, ethnic range, lifestyle choices and business power.” She adds: “The next year will see a broadening of the types of models chosen for advertising – the more ethnic varieties the better. An ethnic mix in a single model is the ideal – the trend for Eurasian models in South East Asia is bigger than the number of people who actually look like that!”. Rebecca also predicts that attitudes towards food photography are changing, with people putting a greater focus on believable-looking dishes rather than over-edited, plastic-like food. “Instagram and its ilk have turned food photography on its head. Pictures of overly stylised food look both inedible and untrustworthy. In friends’ snaps we trust. Expect to see more restaurants, cafes, food manufacturers and recipe books adopt the aesthetic in the coming year.”

Creative trends

Lens flare is a key look for 2014, while other predictions from iStock include actionbased travel imagery, food photography and a more realistic attitude to model shots – all Instagram-influenced trends that will influence this year’s photography.