Sunday, 16 October 2011

[] Food Photography For Beginners

By Daniel Walker

Images of food are all over. We cannot walk down any leading shopping street without being barraged by them from the windows of all the food shops. We open a magazine and there they are again thrusting their mouth watering delights at us.

When you see some of the professional pics of food you may think that you may never be able to take such good photographs but you could surprise yourself. Much of food photography is about technique and tips and tricks.

Light as always with photography is King. Get it right and you create magic. Get it wrong and we all know the result! Treat the food you're photographing as you would any other still life subject and ensure that it is well lit. Most of the bad examples of food photography you will come across would have been drastically improved with adequate lighting.

One of the best places to photograph food is by a window where there is abundant natural light - perhaps supported with flash bounced off a ceiling or wall to give more harmonious lighting that cuts out the shadows. This daylight helps to keep the food looking much more natural.

If you are going to be doing a lot of food photos then consider creating a food light box to make your job simpler and quicker. This consists of a framed area covered in diffusion screens with lights behind on stands or attached to flexible tubes so you can move them easily into position. The food sits on a plain smooth single coloured background cover that is usually white so there is no background to remove with Photoshop later. Make sure the cover is easy to wipe in case of food splashes.

Slow is great with food so use a slow shutter speed which will allow time to capture the depth of the image. Put your camera on a solid tripod to inhibit movement and stop blurring and use a shutter release cable.

Choose your props very carefully to suit the end results that you are looking for. The props will make or break your photos. It's usually the props that set an amateur pic aside from a pro shot.

Do not skimp on your equipment if you want to do good food photography. Having a top quality SLR camera with a good lens will make all the difference. You must have full control over all the settings - shutter speed - aperture setting - zoom - to be able to create top shots. Using good quality lighting will also pay massive dividends.

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