One of the best compliments a Food Photographer can get is to hear that a photograph invoked other senses for someone. I recently received that when someone said that when they looked at this they could smell the cookies. Our senses are very often intertwined. Sight invokes smell, which can invoke taste which can then invoke memories, which is really remembering how you experienced something with all your senses at some time in the past. So if you ever dig someone’s food photographs and your other senses kick in. Let them know, you’ll make their day and put a smile on their face. If you want your food or beverages to invoke that same experience, find yourself a food photographer or a beverage photographer who can create images for you to do just that. Cheers!
Recently I was asked where the inspiration comes from for my Food Photography and how I go about building and finishing the photographs. So, here’s a run down of a my recent shot of 4 grapes.
When I saw the grapes in the supermarket it sparked the idea for the shot. I was pushing the cart, hunched over it, head low, right at the height of the produce, going up and down the aisles when I saw them. The produce section has green shelving where they keep the grapes and the red grapes looked great against it. I wanted to mimic that look in my food photography.
When I got them home, I set up the studio with a white translucent background and a white reflective piece of poly for a table top. The first light was set up behind the translucent with a green gel on it. If you’ve got white translucent and reflective, gels can be your best friend to change them to all different kinds of colors.
The grapes went down on the tabletop and the first shot looked like a silhouette. I added an overhead light in a beauty dish above the grapes and slightly in front of them. The second shot brought out the grapes but also brought back the white of the reflective surface they were on, totally washing out the green from the gelled back light. It was at that point I knew I needed two shots to composite together.
I got the grapes ready. Looking through the bunch I found the 4 best looking and broke off that batch from the rest. Carefully washing them and drying them so as not to bruise them. Then a fine misting spay bottle with a 50/50 water to glycerine mixture provided the water drops. I find that if you spray to the side of the subject rather then straight on you get a much finer droplet.
The grapes went back to the table and the first shot was made with only the back light, providing the green tone across the back and the table top. Then a second shot with the beauty dish light from above to light the grapes. A tripod is paramount as you don’t want the camera to move at all between the two shots.
Then the two shots are brought together in Photoshop to composite them together. For info on that look a little further back in the blog for the videos I did on the Buddha Beer bottle composites. Same idea.
I hope you enjoyed this short explanation. If you have any Food Photography questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
One of the best ways to entice people to visit your restaurant or purchase your product is to make them hungry or thirsty. Professional food photography can do that in a way that a quick photograph with your phone cannot do.
I had a restaurant owner tell me that customers told him they were instantly hungry for his food when they visited his website and saw his dishes featured in photographs. They had never visited before but they came right in that evening.
About 3 months before he had reached out to me and we worked together to create great looking food photography for his place. We got together and talked about what food he wanted to feature, the mood he likes to convey for his restaurant. We then planned a day to come in to his restaurant when we could shoot. We found the right spots to photograph each plate. We talked about how the food should be plated and how I would photograph the food. He made and plated the dishes one at a time. Using a mixture of natural light and artificial light, props from around his restaurant and my sense of composition, we created food photographs that made people hungry.
It doesn’t happen in an instance. It takes a little bit of planning and work but creating food photography that will make people hungry or thirsty and want to get those desires satisfied with your food or drinks can be done when you hire a professional food photographer.
Why I’m a Food Photographer? I spent time as a wedding photographer. I’ve photographed people, landscapes, cityscapes and street photography, so what was it about food and beverages that really took hold of me?
Looking back on my days so far, almost every great moment with family and friends involved either food or drink or both. Going back to when I was a kid, I remember the holidays when the family would come over and we’d gather around the dinning room table and spend the entire day there. The food would come out in waves, dishes would be cleared, another wave of food, coffee would follow with desert. We’d be laughing or arguing but no matter what the memories are good.
Later on in life, keg parties or getting together with friends for at a bar. Friends having a good Meeting someone new over coffee or a dinner.
See the thread here. Food and drink is always involved. When we gather as people we do so over a meal or in a place to sit with a drink and socialize. That’s where real connections are made. That’s where life really happens. The important parts of life for me anyway.
So it’s not surprising that Food Photography and Beverage Photography is my “chosen” type of photography. Sure I photograph other things and I find that fun and fulfilling as well. But photographing food and beverages is what I really love to do. I do it for clients and I do it for myself just for the fun and challenge of it. That is where my passion is.
I’ve been a food photographer for years now. I love it. Being a beverage photographer can be a lighting challenge some times, but you can usually enjoy a drink after you’ve gotten the shot. In short, I am a Food and Beverage Photographer simply because I love it.