When photographing food, you want to make it look as delicious as it tastes. In this video, Greg from LensProToGo gives you a set of tips to take your food photography to a higher level. It doesn’t involve using glue for milk or shoe polish for grill marks. Just some right light, angles and props, and you’ll get the photos that will make your viewers hungry.
Choosing props/setting the mood
The first thing you need to decide before you start arranging the food and taking the photos is the mood. You may want to make it look bright and “happy,” or go for a dark and “moody” look. Also, you can pick between depicting the dish in the making, or a finished course. After this, start building the scene around the main dish.
Choose the props and the background that fit the mood you want to achieve. Pay attention to the reflective objects and where you place them. Also, be aware where you place the objects in the frame. Don’t block the main dish with the props, place tall objects behind the main dish and the short/small ones in front of it.
Keep in mind that neutral color palette allows the food to stand out, so pick neutral colors for the objects that aren’t parts of the dish. You can also add some texture with fabric, textured dishes, or a book. Keep in mind, though, that sometimes it’s better to keep it simple.
Before you start building the scene, pick the angle of the camera. Most commonly, photos of food are taken directly from above, at a 45-degree angle, or straight on. When you choose the angle, lock the camera and build the scene accordingly. Place your main dish on one of the thirds or in the center of the photo and add the rest of the objects around it.
Greg recommends using a single light source. He uses natural light from a large window, but you can also go with the artificial lighting if you prefer it (or the conditions dictate it). If you want to add some definition, shoot against the light. However, try avoiding harsh shadows, so diffuse the light.
Greg also shares some extra tips: you can add water to make the objects gleam. Adding some action can make the photo more interesting. For example, you can capture someone scooping out the dish or sprinkling cheese on top of it.
Of course, there are plenty more tips for making food photos that stand out. But for a three-minute tutorial, Greg has shared quite a lot of them. If you’re just starting out, I believe this video can come in handy, so make sure to watch it and hear all the tips.