Here are some quick easy food photography tips for making food the focal point. It is about perspective and using small dishes and utensils. I have a never-ending fascination with photography and more specifically with how the photographer made the picture.
I could spend countless hours learning about the process. I want to know what camera was used and what the settings were, what was the lighting like, what is the surface and background in the image, how was the styling done, what props were used, who helped make the image, what kind of room was it taken in and so on.
Of course, I love seeing how the pros do it but in reality, 99% of us don’t have a professional photography studio with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of equipment. So, I like seeing how YOU make your photos. How did you get the picture of the chocolate drizzling down on the cake? Did you have an assistant? A tripod? Were you trying to hold your camera in one hand while pouring chocolate with the other? Those are the kinds of things I love to learn about!
With food photography you want the food to be the focal point of the picture. You want the subject, in this case it is a chocolate coated mini cheesecake, to be the main thing that your eye looks at.
There can be other interesting things in the photo but your eyes should be drawn to or rest on the main subject. Which fork looks better in the photos above? The one on the bottom does. When you look at the top photo, the fork looks like it is as big as the cheesecake.
It isn’t a bad photo especially if I was trying to show bit sized cheesecake but the cheesecake in the photo is actually the size of a standard cupcake. When I look at the first photo, the fork is a distraction and my eyes bounce back and forth from the cheesecake to the fork without knowing where to rest.
Okay, so now you are probably thinking that I used a serving fork for the sake of making a point but in reality, the fork in the first photo is a standard size salad fork! Wondering what kind of fork I used in the bottom picture? It is a tiny, disposable, fake silver, plastic fork that is only 4 inches long!
These pictures weren’t taken on a dinner plate but rather the smaller salad plate. Once again you can see the difference between the mini fork and the salad fork. The plate would actually work for this photo since I was able to sprinkle nuts on the plate but it wasn’t the look I was going for.
Instead, I used a mason jar lid as a plate. I need to go shopping specifically for small dishes for taking pictures. I want interesting textures that aren’t too intrusive. Maybe I can find a children’s tea set and I might have luck at finding dishes at a secondhand store. I also need some small glass drinkware.
These two photos show you the size of the mason jar lid I used, the salad plate and the dinner plate. Can you imagine how tiny the cheesecake would look on the dinner plate? They also show my mini plastic fork, a salad fork and a dinner fork.
The mini plastic fork is 4 inches long and the salad for is about 6.75 inches long. The tines on the mini fork are about 1/2 inch wide at the tips and the tines on the salad fork are about 7/8 inch wide at the tips.
It makes a huge difference! I also have mini spoons that I used in my Homemade Spicy Chocolate Ice Cream photo as well as the Strawberry Lemonade Cheesecake photo. I bought them at Party City for my TCBY Frozen Yogurt Social but I’ve seen them for sale other places as well.
What photography tips and hints can you share with me?