Forms of photography :
Photography is art, science, and practice of creating durable images by recording light or other electromagnetic radiation, either chemically by means of a light-sensitive material such as photographic film, or electronically by means of an image sensor. - Wiki
For every click there must be a purpose and this purpose defines the forms of the photography. Even a casual photograph of particular moment has a purpose - to store the moment. Based on purpose, photography can take following basic forms:
Portrait / Model /glamour:
A portrait is a close-up image of any living entity- may be human, mammal like tiger and even a bird close-up. When the use of portrait is to be made for commercial use, specially for portfolio for acting and modelling, its called as glamour photography. Extensive use of artificial light, appropriate make-up, selected costume and telephoto lens (100 mm - 300 mm focal length) are the features of accessories for a normal portrait shoot. Many new compositions, poses, digital effects are seen in portrait photography - result of the market demand. To make advertise impressive and unique innovative attempts are practiced. However in my view, when a female model is involved many photographers do not innovate. A common practice is to make photo hot and spicy asking model to ware less clothes. Such images, frequently shot for making wallpapers, are even unfocused, and shot hurriedly. A beginner can shoot great portrait if simple tips like - golden rule (1/3rd rule), composition, breathing space , focus - are followed.
Landscape / Nature:
To travel to scenic places and to shoot scenery are inseparable One loves to capture giant nature canvas involving natural elements such as complex skies, deep woods, flowing water and what not ! A rookie and conventional way people take photograph of landscape having no perspective, often people sharing large space. Additionally the low end cameras are not capable of capturing the dynamic range of the colors. It happens often at a place one love the surroundings and fails to get right result. There can be two reasons for such failure - technical and psychological. Although the scene is eye catching, camera fails to acquire what needs to be. One needs camera with low light performance (High ISO), high dynamic range acquisition (bracketing capability for HDR - click here for some sunning HDR images), sharp and wide angle lens, a good tripod. The best time to acquire good landscapes is dusk and dawn and can be extended for one or two hours in morning depending on season and geography.
A different world altogether - often unseen due to limitation of human vision. Special macro accessories (lens with 1:1 ratio, flash etc) reveal stunning images. Butterflies, Insects, flowers are common objects recorded. Colors and features of the object grabs the attention of onlooker. Play with depth of field using low f-number lenses creates stunning pictures. For research work and detailed study microscope attachments or 5:1 macro lenses are also used.
Action / sports:
Images of live event are considered under this genre and involves shooting: Sports events, fashion shows, Dance performance etc. Fast focusing camera (Usually with large sensors professional camera with very good low light performance) and fast telephoto lenses (low f-number usually f2.8 and vibration reduction / optical stabilization are essential gears. Primary reasons being banned use of flash and requirement of high shutter speed to freeze action. Telephoto lens enables to take portrait images without disturbing the performer or audience. Key cameraman skills expected are mastery on camera operation, study of the object behavior, knowledge about the content, moral values.
Event/news coverage, images for articles, documentation in the field for environmental study, awareness programs, legal requirements and many such purposes can be categorized as documentary photography. These images have power to create history through its content. Famous phrase - A picture says thousand words - perhaps written after looking at the impact created by pictures of war, famines, agitations etc.
Candid / Paparazzi / street:
Any photo without any preparation, adjustments, direction is called candid. Relates it-self largely with travel photography. Without letting know to the subject that its being photographed brings out natural expressions and actions which creates impact. It showcases the environment situation of markets, villages, people at common places. For shooting portraits telephoto lens is used and wide angle lens otherwise.
Product / Table top – food, still life:Purpose is often to advertise the product or sometimes macro photography. Artificial lighting showcases talent and inventiveness of the photographer.
These forms can be achieved in numerous manners, which largely depends on the way technology or light is used creatively to capture the image. Read here about some remarkable photo-techniques.