Mastering the Art of Food Photography

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In recent years, surveys have suggested that about 70% of millennials take photos of food they either cook or order. Many of them do it so that they can post their food pictures on social media.

This might lead you to believe that it must be simple enough to take food photography, but if you’re going to be taking photos of food for commercial purposes, you’ll need to know some of the latest techniques.

For starters, you won’t want to shoot photos of food in your kitchen. Instead, you’ll want to have them taken in a photography studio that’ll allow you to control food photo lighting. It’ll enable you to show things like the contrast in food photos.

You’ll also want to make sure you’re using a high-quality camera for food photography. It’ll make all the difference in the world both when you’re photographing food and editing food photos.

Here are more tips to help you master the art of food photography.

Set the Right Scene

When you’re preparing to take a bunch of photographs of food, it’s going to be important to set up the right scene for them. Ideally, you should aim to try to tell a story with your photos without having to work too hard at it.

Every food photograph needs a so-called “hero object.” This will be the food item that will be the focus of the photo. It should be the first thing people notice when they look at it.

However, your hero object will also need to be surrounded by other items that complement it and really bring a food photo to life. So, if you’re shooting something like a hamburger, you might want to strategically place items like a plate, a knife, a bottle of ketchup, and more around it.

You do not want these items to distract from the hero object, but you do want them to each play their small part in telling whatever story it is you’re trying to tell.

Enlist the Services of a Food Stylist

At first, you might think we’re kidding when we suggest hiring a food stylist to help you with your food photography. On the contrary, as anyone who shoots food photography for a living can attest, food stylists play a key role when it comes to making foods look their best for photos.

A food stylist will make sure food items are prepared in a way that makes them look appetizing in photos. They’ll also use certain tricks of the trade to make foods glisten under the watchful eye of a camera.

A food stylist can help you set the right scene for food photography and see to it that people are going to have a reaction to seeing your food photos.

Capture Unique Angles

Far too often, people will take the simple and straightforward approach when they’re photographing food. They’ll either shoot it from a bird’s eye view while holding a camera over the top of food or shoot it from the side to showcase its profile.

While you will want to capture some types of foods from these angles, you also shouldn’t be shy about playing around with other angles. You might be able to add some contrast and extra depth to food photos by taking this approach.

Let’s say, for example, that you’re interested in photographing several tacos on a cutting board with cut-up limes surrounding them. If you take this photo from above, you might run the risk of having it look dull and lifeless.

On the other hand, if you take this photo from a 45-degree angle with your camera lens focused on the tacos and the cut-up limes in the background, it’ll add some much-needed life to your photos. People will look at your tacos in a whole new light from this vantage point.

Try Different Lighting Options

As we alluded to earlier, utilizing the right food photo lighting will be of the utmost importance when it comes to food photography. If you choose the wrong lighting option, your food photos might come out too light or too dark, and they might not make the food look appetizing at all.

With this in mind, you should test out different lighting options at the start to see what kinds of results you’re able to get. Some foods will work well with more natural light, while others will benefit from having bright studio lighting.

You might also want to play around with tools like diffusers that will subject your food photography to softer lighting. They’ll really come in handy when you’re trying to shine the right type of light on food products.

Avoid Using Too Much Color

If you don’t have too much experience when it comes to food photography, you might find yourself tempted to try to inject as much color into the mix as you can when you’re photographing food. It seems as though bright colors would be a natural fit for food photography.

Guess what might happen if you accentuate the fact that you have a bright-red bottle of ketchup right next to the hamburger you’re photographing? It could quite literally steal the scene and make it appear as though you’re trying to highlight the ketchup rather than the hamburger.

For this reason, you’ll want to scale back on how much color you incorporate into your food photography unless this color is a part of your “hero object.” It’ll keep the focus in the right places and guarantee your main food item shines.

Hire Professionals to Help

If you’re willing to work hard enough at it, you should be able to train yourself to master the art of food photography. If you don’t have the time or patience for it, you should think about calling on commercial photography experts for help.

Look for a company that has experience when it comes to product photography, especially as it pertains to food. They can take whatever ideas you might have for your food photography and bring them to life in their photography studio. They can also handle things like editing food photos for you.

By working with a company like this, you can rest assured knowing you’ll be left with the best food photography possible in the end.

Contact Us for Your Food Photography Needs

Would you like to work with a commercial photography company that can take care of your food photography needs? The creative team from Pure Design Studio would love to help you capture the best photos of your company’s food.

We can also help companies with a wide range of other types of commercial photography. You can turn to us for commercial vehicle wraps, commercial vehicle decals, wall graphics, custom wall murals, and even window designs.

Get in touch with us today to learn more.