wtf is a lifestyle image?

truth is there is no consensus.

from brand to brand, agency to agency and photographer to photographer you will get a vastly different answer. some will tell you that is any image that includes propping, others will say it’s an image that evokes a lifestyle (in a setting) and some will insist it requires the inclusion of a model.

these nuances have come up throughout my career no matter where i work or in what capacity. so - this is me, officially, admitting i have no idea what it exactly it might mean to you, and instead offering alternative terms we can use to communicate what kind of images we are producing in our work together.


product - this images include only your product and a colored background (or a white background depending on your needs) with a mood created only by specific lighting.


styled (flat-lay and standing) - these images include images that are styled with props, fabrics, etc. etc. etc. - whatever is necessary to set the mood. when discussing these images let’s note whether we want them laying flat or standing up - or if you want a certain amount standing vs. lying down.


in the wild - your product anywhere in the wild - kitchen, bathroom, beach, etc. along with props to set the mood.


live image - these include models and can be more styled or more in the wild, let’s chit chat more about the vibe + exactly how much of the model we want to show up in the image.