First, we eat with our eyes! As a blogger who shares recipes, food photography can be a challenge. But, I have a special guest today who can help by sharing his 10 Food Photography Tips That Will Make a Difference. I’m happy to introduce Alex Schult, Founder & CEO of PhotographyTalk.com a website, that is an “everything” resource for photographers.
Thank you, Katherine, for having me as your guest today.
When we talk about Gastro Marketing, the gastronomic photography is a fundamental element in every restaurant and in countless cases, you will see that there are millions of examples on the Internet proving so. On one hand, we have the photographs that were taken by cooks who prepare their delicious meals, the managers, the restaurant owners and so on. In this case, the photos must be impeccable, and they must reflect, with maximum reliability, the values of their restaurants and hotels through the dish they serve. Any failure in the photographic moment can cause a bad impression of the restaurant and something like that cannot be afforded. On the other hand, we have professional photographers, bloggers, “foodies” and all other gastronomically obsessed people who take photos and advertise the very same features of a restaurant which can be seen through food the taste. Both sides should attend to certain basic rules when it comes to photography, to get the best out of it.
It is everything in photography and in the absence of professional lighting, the natural light (not only the light that comes from the Sun) is the most appropriate. Of course, as a rule, the flash is forbidden although it is sometimes interesting to activate it as fill light. A trick: try to “expose” the photographs, especially when the plate is white since the camera’s photometer usually measures the total light and we are interested to present the content from the plate appropriately.
We must bear in mind that gastronomic photography is like a portrait. We must focus on the main thing and that is the food. The rest of the elements of the photograph must be secondary actors that help us understand the dish. These small details, without apparent importance, are what often make the difference.
It is something that is presupposed and something we must pay a great deal of attention to. We must take exquisite care with spots on the edges of the plate, especially with sauces, creams, and soups, dirty cutlery or tablecloths with breadcrumbs.
No Half-Eaten Dishes
Normally, a half-eaten dish is not usually attractive to the one who sees it in a photograph, since it is interpreted as if it were food remains. This point, especially when the foodie on duty does not let us start a dish until it is photographed, is what generates the most controversy between groups of people who go to a restaurant and who end up eating cold food.
Test All Kinds of Angles and Approaches
In order to make a good photograph, the most important thing is not the quality of the camera, but the eye of the user and now that the digital format allows us to make the infinity of photographs. There is no excuse for not trying all kinds of frames. Each dish has its own good profile side, so search for it with the aim to show the world its true colors. Trick: Play with the depth of field – meaning that the plane of the photograph is perfectly focused, and it matches with what we want to highlight. The rest is out of focus and we sense its presence, although we do not see clearly.
Try to Get Closer to the Plate
This point agrees with the previous one, but it has enough importance to bear this in our minds. One famous photographer, Robert Capa, said once: “If your photographs are not good enough it’s because you’re not close enough”. This is the case with gastronomic photography where often surprising results are achieved if we have a clear, close up photo.
Transfer the Reality
We must try to make the photo as if the photography and reality don’t differ too much. Why is this important? Because a certain dish from the photo found in the menu looks tasty and we would like it just the way it looks like on that photo. We must also take care of the elements that accompany the photo, which can reflect exactly the essence of the recipe and recreate the appropriate atmosphere. The trick is to transfer all the important features.
Add Some Makeup to the Dish
Without forgetting the previous point, there are small tricks that give a more appetizing appearance to the dishes. Add a little oil to the dish to shine more, spray it with water and it will bring freshness, add a little smoke to a stew in order to enhance the authenticity or add gelatin to a sauce – makes it look more appetizing.
The speed in this type of photography is a rising value, just for one thing – that the dish does not lose consistency. All the essential features are caught when the photos of a dish are taken right when it is served.
Get used to looking at pictures of food with real critical spirit, analyzing what is missing or left over, if the right approach has been used or if we are facing the perfect photography.
Since 2009, PhotographyTalk works every day to improve photography in the world. Constant work on this contributes to better photographs in the world, all through a continuous and alternate process of learning and working. They have been featured in Huffington Post, Inc. Magazine, Forbes and many more.
Thank you, Alex, for these valuable tips!
Well there you have it my sweet bloggy friends, 10 Food Photography Tips That Will Make a Difference. What did you find most interesting in these terrific tips?
I hope to see you all back here tomorrow for the TFT blog party for blog writers and blog readers!
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