Documentary-Style Wedding Photography

Thursday, October 19th 2023. | Weddings
Relaxed, documentary style wedding photography from One Fine Day
Relaxed, documentary style wedding photography from One Fine Day from


Wedding photography has evolved over the years, and one of the most popular styles today is documentary-style wedding photography. This style captures candid moments and tells the story of the wedding day in a natural and unobtrusive way. It is a departure from traditional posed shots and focuses on capturing the emotions, interactions, and details of the day. In this article, we will explore what documentary-style wedding photography is all about and why it has become so popular.

What is documentary-style wedding photography?

Documentary-style wedding photography, also known as photojournalistic or reportage wedding photography, is a style that aims to capture authentic moments and emotions as they naturally unfold throughout the wedding day. The photographer takes a fly-on-the-wall approach, observing and capturing moments without interfering or posing the subjects. The result is a collection of candid and unscripted images that tell the story of the day.

This style of photography is often characterized by its raw and unfiltered aesthetic. The images are not heavily edited or retouched, and the focus is on capturing the genuine emotions and interactions between the couple, their families, and their friends.

Advantages of documentary-style wedding photography

There are several advantages to choosing documentary-style wedding photography for your big day:

1. Natural and candid moments

By opting for a documentary-style approach, you can ensure that the moments captured on your wedding day are genuine and unposed. This allows you to relive the emotions and experiences of the day through the images.

2. Less intrusive

Documentary-style photographers blend into the background and capture moments as they happen, without interrupting or directing the action. This allows you and your guests to enjoy the day without constant interruptions for posed shots.

3. Storytelling

Documentary-style wedding photography is all about telling the story of your wedding day. The images will capture the details, interactions, and emotions that make your day unique, allowing you to relive the memories for years to come.

4. Authenticity

Documentary-style photography captures the true essence of your wedding day. The images reflect the personalities of the couple and their loved ones, creating a collection of authentic and meaningful photographs.

Sample documentary-style wedding photography

Here are five sample images that showcase the beauty and storytelling potential of documentary-style wedding photography:

1. The First Look

In this image, the photographer captures the raw emotions of the couple as they see each other for the first time on their wedding day. The joy and excitement are palpable, and the image perfectly captures the anticipation and love between the couple.

2. The Ceremony

This image captures a tender moment during the wedding ceremony. The couple’s hands are clasped together, symbolizing their union and commitment to each other. The soft lighting and intimate composition add to the emotional impact of the image.

3. The Reception

At the reception, the photographer captures a candid moment of laughter and celebration. The image showcases the joy and happiness of the couple and their guests, creating a lively and vibrant atmosphere.

4. The Details

Documentary-style photography also focuses on capturing the small details that make your wedding unique. This image showcases a close-up of the couple’s wedding rings, highlighting the intricate design and symbolism behind them.

5. The Dance

This image captures a heartfelt moment between the couple during their first dance. The photographer freezes the moment, allowing the couple to relish in each other’s love and affection.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. How do I find a documentary-style wedding photographer?

To find a documentary-style wedding photographer, you can start by researching local photographers and reviewing their portfolios. Look for photographers who specialize in this style and have a portfolio that aligns with your vision for your wedding day.

2. How much does documentary-style wedding photography cost?

The cost of documentary-style wedding photography can vary depending on several factors, including the photographer’s experience, location, and the length of coverage. It is best to reach out to photographers directly to discuss pricing and packages.

3. Will the photographer still capture posed shots?

While documentary-style photographers focus on capturing candid moments, they are typically open to capturing some posed shots if requested. However, these posed shots will be kept to a minimum, and the main focus will still be on capturing authentic and unscripted moments.

4. How long will it take to receive the final images?

The turnaround time for receiving the final images can vary depending on the photographer and their workload. Most photographers will provide an estimated timeline during the initial consultation.

5. Can I request specific shots or moments to be captured?

Yes, you can definitely discuss specific shots or moments you would like to be captured with your documentary-style photographer. They will work with you to understand your vision and incorporate it into their coverage of the day.

6. Do documentary-style photographers edit the images?

Yes, documentary-style photographers do edit the images to enhance their overall aesthetic. However, the editing is typically minimal and focuses on adjusting the exposure, color balance, and cropping of the images. The goal is to maintain the authenticity and natural feel of the photographs.

7. How many images should I expect to receive?

The number of images you will receive can vary depending on the length of coverage and the photographer’s shooting style. On average, you can expect to receive anywhere from 300 to 800 images from a full day of coverage.

8. Can I print and share the images?

Yes, as the client, you will typically have the rights to print and share the images for personal use. However, it is important to discuss the usage rights with your photographer to ensure that you are both on the same page.

9. Do documentary-style photographers offer albums or prints?

Many documentary-style photographers offer albums and prints as part of their packages. These can be a great way to showcase your favorite images from the day and create a tangible keepsake.

10. How far in advance should I book a documentary-style photographer?

It is recommended to book your documentary-style photographer as soon as possible, especially if you have a specific photographer in mind. Popular photographers tend to book up quickly, so it is advisable to secure your date well in advance.


Documentary-style wedding photography offers a unique and authentic way of capturing the emotions, interactions, and details of your special day. By opting for this style, you can relive the genuine moments and create a visual narrative that tells the story of your wedding day for years to come. If you are looking for a photography style that goes beyond traditional posed shots and focuses on capturing the essence of your wedding, documentary-style wedding photography may be the perfect choice for you.


documentary-style, wedding photography, candid moments, storytelling, authentic, emotions, photojournalistic, reportage, natural, unposed

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