Food photography isn’t just about taking beautiful pictures of things that are edible. It’s about telling a story and bringing various food recipes to life. Food photography should easily make the viewer engage, anticipate the flavour of the food and remember how that food smells. It’s almost a sensory exercise with the human eyes so that the viewer can be enticed.
Food photography is time consuming, which is why you’ll need to plan beforehand. Therefore, we have curated some of the most fantastic food styling photography secrets that you can implement to take your food photography skills to the next level.
15 Food Photography Styling Secrets
- Less Is Always More
Most of the time we tend to use too many items in a single shot, which not only creates chaos but also competes for attention with one another. So, if your image is not working, it’s better to simply remove some props before adding more. Cut down on the unnecessary feats and keep it simple.
- Choose Smaller Ingredient
When you’re selecting & shopping for your food styling ingredients, try to choose the ones that are smaller in size. In that way, you’ll be able to fit more items into your camera frame without making the viewer overwhelmed. Moreover, using smaller ingredients will not take away the viewer’s attention from the main palate.
- Rule Of Odds
When performing food photography and styling, you have to opt for the rule of odds. This is because the human brain always relates complete groups to even numbers, thereby ignoring them. On the other hand, odd numbers help in creating a dynamic & interesting composition.
- Showcase The Process
If you’re cooking something, you have to showcase the process as well. Photographing the procedure will help in creating a story that the viewer will be able to relate to because it’s genuine.
- Observe The Light
The food that you choose to photograph is as essential as the light you utilised to shoot it with. Whether it’s a natural or an artificial light source, you have to ensure that it shapes your food in the ideal manner possible. Once you can understand the same, you’ll be able to shoot beautifully structured food photos.
- Selecting Your Angle
Selecting the ideal angle for your shot is crucial. For instance, you’ll not be shooting a burger and a pizza from the same angle. A burger could be shot horizontally so that the layering can be visible. Alternatively, a pizza should be shot from a plan view to showcase the toppings. Thus, think about the angle that would highlight your food in an exemplary manner.
- Opt For Colours
If you want your food photos to look bright & vibrant, then you have to opt for colourful props. Ensure that they compliment your main palate well before using them. Furthermore, colourful food photographs tend to be extremely social media worthy.
- Using The Proper Sized Plates
Choosing the correct-sized plate is very critical in food photography and styling. Shooting small amounts of food placed inside a large plate or vice-versa will make your photo look awkward.
- Keep Your Garnishes On-Hand
It’s recommended that you grow your herbs and keep them beside you at all times so that your food styling process goes seamlessly. Some of the common garnishes include thyme, parsley, rosemary, mint and basil. Using garnishes can make your food plate look more lively & organic. However, don’t go overboard at the same time.
- Utilise Water & Glycerine To Create Water Droplets
In case you’re styling beverages or fresh fruits, then you have to use this trick. Water droplets can be created on the sides of a beverage drink or fresh fruit, to give an unadulterated feeling to the viewer. All you have to mix water and vegetable glycerine in a similar ratio and store it away inside a spray bottle.
- Keep Extra Styling Ingredients
You’ll never know what can go wrong when you’re performing your food styling and photography. Since food items are perishable, it’s better to have extra styling ingredients with you. Having to run to the grocery store in the middle of your shoot, just because the apple you have has a large brown spot, will be a nightmare.
- Add Some Mess
Sometimes, it’s better to add some spills, crumbs or sprinkles of food alongside your main palate, so that you can create that art-inspired food photography. Such a practice will provide your photo with a much-needed organic kick, which will let the viewer know either the food was finished eating or was in the process of being eaten.
- Adding Texture
Texture forms an important component of food styling & photography. Utilise varying textures to create something interesting. For example, you can mix the uneven texture of meringue on a lemon pie with the smoothness of a napkin kept beside it. Similarly, you can add rose petals to your photograph too. It all depends on your preferences.
- Cutlery Creativity
In your food styling arsenal, cutlery forms a major element. It helps in defining the style & feel of your food photograph. Therefore, ensure that you place your silverware perfectly & neatly – either on a napkin or crisscrossed – depending upon the setting you’re shooting in (formal or informal).
- Create Interesting Backdrops
If you’re just starting as a food stylist & photographer, then you can try using different backdrop options that you can find easily at your home. Parchment papers, baking sheets, ceramic tiles, wallpaper, tablecloths, stick on tiles, vinyl backdrops and so on.
At the end of the day, food photography is all about making your imaginations go wild. Always try to keep it honest, and you’ll be good to go.
We hope our ideas and have been helpful and for any further inquiries, be sure to connect with our professional food photographers any time.