What is the difference between Candid and Traditional photography?

Nothing but Candid pics vs. Traditional pics

If you take the literal meaning of Candid, it means being Honest, frank, truthful or sincere. Yes, probably Candid word would have derived from those. Here in the photography world, Candid wedding photography means taking pictures of people who are unaware that they are being picturized. The photographer is always in an EYE – simply capturing the scene without actively altering the scene by giving direction to the people in the photo.

I would say pictures are taken without once knowledge. However, sometimes a candid photographer also have to give certain directions to get better pictures as apart from candid clicks, some posed pictures are always necessary and need to be portrayed.


Conventional / Traditional Photography is the style of photography which we all have grown up seeing over the past few years, where you have photographers will be firm on the event or approaching you on regular intervals asking “LOOK HERE, SMILE PLEASE.”

So basically Wedding photography has two styles

  • Candid or Photojournalistic photography
  • Conventional or Traditional photography

Do you want to know in detail about both? Here you go

Difference between Candid and Traditional photography

Equipment used

Yes, As per my personal experience, I have seen most of the times the equipment utilized for both are different, Candid photographers would use high-end modern cameras which a Traditional photographer may not. But nowadays with gear rates are dropping, I have seen traditional photographers use similar equipment as candid photographers, but what makes a significant difference is technique and approach.

Both of they would saw the same scene differently with their camera eye.

Understanding the environment around you and adapting to it.

The Art of Composition -Both will frame the same subject standing in the same place differently…

They both see light falling on a subject and how they plan to blend natural light with flashlights.

Understanding the gear limits and then using it to get the best results out of the given scene.

Studying colors and what color temp. to set your camera to shoot the scene.

Lastly, Picture Quality Differences- how well will they do post-processing on images to achieve the look they looking for.

Traditional photographers most of the time focus on posed portraits with standard poses almost in all the weddings. Their pictures are super sharp and seen crystal clear.


Traditional vs candid photography images 

traditional vs candid


For which functions do you choose Candid photographer Vs Traditional photographer?

By now you know the difference between the two, so depending on your need & budget, you can hire one. However, no matter what are the functions, candid moments can always be captured all the times. As candid photographers usually run a lot from one place to another and with super heavy gear approx. An 8kg weight of just one camera and they usually carry two cameras, to ensure that they get the same scene from various angles to have a wide variety of pictures, Also by using a different lens to shoot the same scene can tell a totally different story.

Traditional photographers on other hand prefer standing at one location most of the times and shooting the same scene, without changing lens or trying different lighting gear to get some more variety in pictures. Not to forget how they look at the scene is different than how a candid photographer will look at the scene. In short, a candid photographer will give you loads of creative angle of your precious moments as seen below by utilizing his gear smartly as seen below with smart choice of lens.

Thousands of moments happen during  a wedding at various stages, which the wedding couple often miss seeing as most of the times  they are busy with wedding rituals, hence to capture these beautiful moments I would suggest personally to have additional photographers at wedding based on scale of the wedding,  so that you get to see all those precious  moments. Hence it is also important to have a decent size of photographers team which can tell a story of your wedding day.

Lastly, -Chose a photographer whose work you love, Never see only a few pictures on social media, rather meet them, ask them to share a complete wedding picture gallery, if you love the frames they have captured, then select them otherwise look for alternatives. Certain functions like receptions’ mainly demand only group pictures hence traditional photographer is a must.


If your family members prefer having loads of group picture and you wish to have candid pictures, then hire a candid photographer who can also get a traditional photographer team, so that they can work in sync and cover the wedding. Never make a mistake of getting a different Candid & Traditional Photography team as most of the times they will end up fighting for space and you as a client will be in loss, as both the team most of the time is just thinking of clicking pictures fast before other team comes or fighting for space, and not thinking enough on getting creative shots.




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  1. I love doing photography, I bring my camera with me everywhere as I like street photography. Thank you for your advise!

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