Note from the Editor: So it’s happened to many of us foodies out there; we make an amazing delicious dish and go to photograph it in all its glory only to have it turn out looking ugly and inedible.
Well, it doesn’t have to be this way! Thanks to this post from our contributor Mama J. over at A Little Bit Crunchy, A Little Bit Rock and Roll; we hope these 10 food photography tips will help you take more irresistible-looking food photos in the future. Like this one here…
Enjoy Part 1 of 3…
10 Great Photography Tips to Make Food Look Irresistible
By: Jenni Fleener
Photography is a fairly new art medium for me that I picked up a few years ago. In college as a studio art major, I was a printmaker; I painted, sculpted, and worked in just about every drawing medium you could think of.
Photography, however, was never something I pursued but always dreamed I would someday. About a year ago, I started a blog showcasing my art and nature photos and quickly began merging my love for photography with my love for food.
I don’t claim to be an expert; photography is a journey for me, one that I am still on. Over the course of a year I have learned a few things about photographing food that I am happy to share with you.
1. What kind of camera do I use?
This is the one question I am asked most often. I use a Canon SLR Digital Rebel with a Canon EF 28-135mm lens. Keep in mind; good cameras don’t necessarily make beautiful photographs. Light, composition, and having a good eye, are key. I personally do not care for point-and-shoot cameras that you have to hold at arm’s length to take a shot. That being said, some photographers make great use of this style of camera.
2. Natural light is a food photographer’s best friend.
Find a room with great light. Northern and southern exposures are your best option because you get nice indirect light that is not too harsh. My house has windows only in the east and west and all the best light comes from windows facing the west. The best light source for me happens to be in the kitchen where I can pull a table up very close to the window. A sheer curtain works perfect to help diffuse light that may be too harsh. Wax paper taped to the window also works for diffusing light. I have also photographed food on beds, chairs, and on a piano bench. Move around from room to room to see where the light is best for you. This can change from day to day and hour to hour.
My photo of Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes is an example where wax paper was used to not only diffuse the light but also was used as the background for the photo.
3. Foam core is a useful and versatile thing.
White foam core is a fairly inexpensive product that can be found at most craft stores. Foam core can be used as back drops as well as directing and bouncing light. If your light source is coming from the left, having a piece of white foam core on the right will help bounce the light back onto your food. This will help cut back on harsh shadows and help your food to be more evenly lit. Getting an extra pair of hands to hold an additional piece of foam core over the food can even help at times. Move it around to see where the lighting will work best.
With my photo of Easy Apple Cake, black foam core is used as a backdrop while white foam core is off the shot being used to more evenly light the cake.
Check back soon for part two of 10 Great Photography Tips to Make Food Look Irresistible …to be continued!
About the blogger:
Jenni Fleener is the creator, photographer and chef behind A Little Bit Crunchy A Little Bit Rock and Roll. She has had a passion for cooking since she was a child. Forget Saturday morning cartoons, Jenni was watching Julia Child. In high school, she would pour over Rolling Stone and cooking magazines. In college art school, she would come home from the design studio to prepare homemade bread …read more about Jenni on her Featured Foodie profile on RecipeLion.