• Sarah Spackman


My favorite thing about photography is how personal and unique it can be for every individual. It's so much more than just "taking a picture" because the real craftsmanship and artistic side of it comes from the editing portion in my opinion. Editing styles are the true stamp of the artist that makes them different from everyone else, but I also know that for beginner photographers or for someone who is looking to hire a photographer, you might not understand all the different types of editing styles, so I am going to dive into what the differences are so you can determine what you associate better with!

A quick reminder: photographers are artists, so if you are going to hire one, please make sure than you hire them because you love their current editing style and who they are as a person. Hiring a photographer for their prices and then asking them to change their style to something you prefer more is devaluing their work and their creative eye they have worked so hard to master.

Also the following descriptions are my own professional opinions and thoughts, and does not deem true or accurate in every potential situation.

Light and Airy

*this photo is not mine, it's only being used for example purposes, link to photographer's website included*

Light and airy photography is very bright, more over exposed, somewhat washed out, and often includes more pastel colors. I see a lot more light and airy photography for higher end weddings, black tie events, and things of that nature. Light and airy photography is very sharp, and crisp looking, and these photographers tend to have more traditional looking photos from what I have seen.

Tips for how to achieve this look:

Over expose slightly when shooting or bring exposure up in post processing, Keep colors natural, avoid grain in the photos by keeping your ISO on the lower end. Shutter speed should be high enough to freeze actions and not have any blur as these photos tend to be very sharp, crisp, and clean.

Dark and Moody

*this photo is not mine, it's only being used for example purposes, link to photographer's website included*

Dark and Moody photography is pretty much exactly how it sounds. It's very dark, under exposed, and often includes more deep, rich colors. Dark and moody photography is usually for more artistic, hipster-vibe people. Weddings with Dark and Moody photographers are often more intimate, and sentimental. Dark and moody photography is very creamy, unique, fine-art looking. These photographers tend to have more artistic/gallery wall looking photos that are for people with a certain kind of perspective.

Tips for how to achieve this look:

Under expose image when shooting or bring exposure way down in post processing, Natural colors, nothing bright, often times grain is added into these images, Keep ISO low. You can have a slower shutter speed if you want to create some artistic motion blur, but not necessary.

Warm Colors Vs. Cool Colors

A lot of photographer's tend to gravitate towards either warmer or cooler tones in all of their editing work. If you are not quite sure what that means, it basically describes the temperature of their photos. Warmer editing styles often include a lot red, orange and yellow tones while cooler editing styles include blues, greens, and purples.

How to achieve these looks:

There are a lot of detailed ways to achieve warmer/cooler ways and the more advanced you get the more you can dive into this, but the general rule of thumb is to move your HSL sliders around. If you want warmer tones, bump up your oranges and bump down your blues, and visa versa if you want cooler tones in your photos.

Cool Color Examples:

Warm Color Examples:

If you are on the search for a photographer, my first tip is to figure out what kind of style or feel you are wanting in your photos. What is the look you want to achieve with the final product? Do you want something classic and traditional? Or something a little more artistic and unusual?

Once you have clarity on the style you want, take some time to follow photographers with that style and get to know their personalities. I think having a connection with your photographer is key to having relaxed, natural looking photos. If you do not have personalities that mesh well together, you will likely feel uncomfortable all day and be self conscious on how you look, which is the last thing you want when you are paying good money for photos!

If you need a little extra help on where to find wedding photographers and other vendors, check out this post I wrote called Where to Find Wedding Vendors

And if you are a photographer who is still trying to figure out their style, I want to encourage you to only follow photographers that inspire you, not the ones who bring you down. If you feel like you are constantly comparing yourself to someone in particular, unfollow them and shake that negativity because you will be a better business owner for it.

I also want to encourage you to try new things and edit the way that feels good for you. Even if it's making up your own style and you don't feel like you fit into any of these categories. Photography is an art, you are an artistic and you have something unique to bring to the table. Don't try to make your work identical to someone else's, you were born to stand out, babe!

Other posts you might enjoy:

How to choose the right Wedding Photographer

Where to find Wedding Vendors

The ultimate guide to creating a wedding timeline

Decorative Dried Plants

whats up!

I'm Sarah Spackman

I'm a western wedding photographer, an online marketing expert, and I have a huge passion for teaching small town girls how to live up to their fullest potential!



FOR BRIDES: The ultimate guide to creating a flawless wedding day timeline! Includes tips, tricks, and an example template!


Download the guide for free!

FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS: Never get stuck during a photo session again! This guide will teach you how to create real connections with your couples and capture those in between moments we all love so much!


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 FOR EVERYONE: My top 5 favorite apps I use to make my instagram feed cohesive, my stories stand out and to schedule out all my posts!


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I'm Sarah Spackman

I'm a small town country girl born with stars in my eyes, and I turned my love for horses into a full time entrepreneurship career capturing love stories and teaching other peeps like me how to follow their freaking hearts.​

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