Whether commercially or simply for Instagram, photographing food has become pretty huge over the last few years. And one man’s passion for food and travel has made him one of the world’s best food photographers. Created by Anton Lorimer at SmugMug Films, this almost 22 minute film follows food photographer and former baker, Eric Wolfinger.
We see how he captures the unique stories behind incredible food creations. In this case, chocolate. Covering everything from the origin of the ingredients in Tanzania to applying the final touches, it’s a unique insight into his working process. Wolfinger’s work tells stories of the chef and their kitchen, the ingredients and where they come from, and the process of crafting a delicious meal.
Like many people, when Wolfinger graduated from college, he had no idea what he wanted to do. He told a friend he would like to make a living with travel and cooking, but considered it to be quite a far fetched idea. But now he’s able to do exactly that.
Food is far more than what’s on the plate. It’s feelings. It’s memories. It’s culture. It’s a person’s state of mind. You know? It’s their story.
I think if you want to tell a human story, the best place to start is at the table. That’s what I try to do.
– Eric Wolfinger
Capturing every step of a dish’s creation, Wolfinger gives the food a life of its own. He gives it meaning beyond simply satisfying our hunger. In this case, he also wants to make it for himself to get a better perspective on what it entails. This allows him to have a better understanding of his client, and deliver something that goes far beyond expectations.
On a journey that takes us from California to Tanzania, it’s amazing to see just how something as commonplace as chocolate begins.
The story also follows Wolfinger origins in becoming a food photographer. He got his start at Tartine Bread, and he wasn’t considering being a professional photographer at the time. He just tried this bread and had to learn how to make it for himself.
After starting to work there, circumstances led to a sort of trade between Wolfinger and Tartine’s owner, Chad Robertson. Wolfinger would teach Chad how to surf. Chad would teach Wolfinger how to make bread. A process which took Wolfinger four years to learn and feel comfortable making himself.
Then, Chad started seriously thinking about making a book about his bread. And who better to photograph it than somebody who’d spent years studying how to make it? Wolfinger describes himself as “an enthusiastic amateur at best”, but it sure seems to have worked out well.
Which leads up to where he is today. Photographing the journey of chocolate. From being grown in the fields, to ending up in a dessert. And because he understands not only the photography but the cooking side of it, he keeps the chef and others involved throughout the whole process. The final images are as much their creation as they are his. A true collaboration.
It’s a unique and very involved approach. One I’ve never seen with food photographers before. It’s easy to see how he’s become one of the best in the world.
[via SmugMug Films]