Food photography... Yikes!
I’ve sure come a long way since I started blogging – and if I’m being honest, I absolutely cringe looking at old blog posts. Isn’t it funny (and kind of scary...) looking back at old blog posts and seeing how much you’ve improved?
I have a long ways to go (like graduating from my iPhone, for example!), but making progress is always encouraging!
Probably the most obvious way to take better pictures of food is to use a real camera. However, using a DSLR requires learning, time, and skillz that I just don’t have... so I’ve got to make do with my iPhone!
Here are 5 practical tips that are easy to implement to improve your photography of food.
ONE | Accessorize your photos
Just like a pair of earrings helps dress up an outfit, an accessory or two can also make photos of your food more visually appealing!
I’ve started using linens and cutting boards to provide layers and different textures in food photos. You can accessorize by adding in some fun silverware – I found this gold cutlery at West Elm and absolutely love it (sometimes silver will make funny reflections of light in photos, but the gold is pretty fuss free!).
You can also add accessories to your photos by using the ingredients that went into your meal. For example, made tacos? Include a lime or avocado in the photo. Made chili? Add fresh garnishes to the top... easy peasy!
TWO | Smaller portions
I’ve found that my photos look best when my plate is full and there aren’t a ton of empty spaces on the plate; but conversely, looking at massive portions of food isn’t overly appealing to me either.
To compromise, I use smaller plates. This way, the food will better fit the plate and you won’t need a blue plate special to fill empty space.
THREE | Natural lighting
Natural lighting is key for good pictures of food. However, finding time to take pictures using natural light can be pretty difficult if you’re working long hours during the day.
To help solve this natural light dilemma, I’ve started using this lighting kit... and boy, oh boy, it has made my blogging life a million times easier. It was recommended to me by Mia, and it was well worth the investment – it’s easy to set up and use, and it folds up and can be shoved under a bed without being an eye sore!
The best part? I can take photos at 11pm and still have nice lighting!
FOUR | Neutral backdrop
Several months ago I discovered the amazingness of white foam board. Life changing.
For real, it provides a neutral, clean backdrop that highlights only the food.
A few months ago I stepped up my game further with some marble contact paper (aka, adult stickers!). I bought this roll and have only used a fraction of it. It’s a muted backdrop, but still has a little pizazz!
Similar to a muted background, I’ve found that I much prefer white plates. My day-to-day place settings aren’t white, so I simply bought a plate (or two...) from Home Goods to use for photos.
FIVE | Clean your plates
Clean. your. plates. Y’all, this is so easy and there is no reason why everyone shouldn’t do this.
Keep a paper towel with you, and before you take any photos, simply clean any drips, spills, or crumbs off of the plate.
As they say, you begin eating with your eyes, so any plating clean-up that can be done is well worth the effort.
What are your food photography secrets?!