Food Photography, Day 21

Sunday’s are a day of rest for the online Food Photography course. We’re asked what we learned, liked, and/or needed help with through a questionnaire, and then we’re asked to post our favourite photo of the week. I’m enjoying this course hugely.

So, this one is my favourite. I love the colours. The focus is slightly off but the colours are delicious. And so was the salad. Homemade Dijon dressing made it special.

Day19_tomBasil.jpg

And a happy Bank Holiday Monday to all my British friends.

Food Photography, Day 20

My food styling tools
My food styling tools

Today we put together a kit of tools, tools of the trade for styling food … stuff I didn’t have to buy because I’m not a professional food photographer, I’m just someone who wants my photos to look memorable for the right reasons. Having said that, I’m now on the hunt for a cheap plastic squeezy bottle, a mister for making food look moist, and a large white board. These are items that we apparently need.

Food Photography, Day 19

Day 19: Food Styling and adding garnish to balance the look of the dish and food.

Day19_tomBasil.jpg

Day19_TomBasil2.jpg

This was done by studying professional photographs on Pinterest’s website. I don’t like Pinterest because people ‘pin’ your photos to their boards, seemingly without your permission. This just rubs me wrong. Nevertheless, I looked through the photos, and noticed a great many that were quite average to below average, and a handful that were quite good. I searched for photographs with/of tomatoes, since I’m up to my armpits in home-grown toms now.  Here’s my effort. I took two shots of some tomatoes, basil and mozzarella balls.

Food Photography, Day 18

Day 18 is basic food styling: Garnish. Soup again. I love soup. I make a lot of soup.

Spicy Roast Tomato and Pepper Soup
Spicy Roast Tomato and Pepper Soup

This one is oven-roasted-home-grown tomato soup with the heel-ends of rye bread turned into croûtons. No light deflector was used on this photo because I rather liked the intense shadows across the bowl. This soup is very spicy, so I thought the shadows quite fitting. I think tomorrow is more food styling, so I might need to find something other than soup.

Food Photography, Day 17

It’s Day 17 of 30, and it’s harmony and balance today. All that plus light from the right direction, reflectors, silverware, plates and food.

Apple and Celeriac Soup
Apple and Celeriac Soup

After several shoots, I realised napkins and spoons just didn’t create the balance that I wanted, so I made soup, so we’d have something to eat for lunch. Celeriac and apple soup. And then I decided that the props might be something other than the usual. My props are the garnish on the soup: pecans, home-made wholemeal croûtons, and chives from the garden. Not just tossed about all casual, but instead … carefully placed, created … rather like gardening. So much work to make it look unplanned and natural.

Food Photography, Day 16

We’re approaching the end of food props. Today it’s dishes: colour, size, shape, texture, material: what works and what we should avoid. We’re told to avoid dark colours.

Surprisingly, it was suggested that acrylic plates can work well for the purpose. I don’t have any. Don’t think I will ever have any. I don’t like the sound of a fork and knife going tick-tick-tick on plastic unless I’m sitting on a log in the forest or on the beach. I’ll stick with porcelain and china. And I’m not going out and buying anything specific for the purpose to prove that plastic is annoying — I already know it’s annoying.

Fried Egg Pasta

Anyway, enough of my snit … my plates and bowls are mostly white. I have some Danish blue and white patterned plates but those aren’t everyday dishes. I also have some old Denby that’s white with a blue-green rim.

A warm plum, cinnamon and nut cake.
A warm plum, cinnamon and nut cake.

So that’s that. White dishes for props is what I’ll use. By the way, the cake is delicious.

Food Photography, Day 15

We’re still playing with props today. And OH what fun! Napkins, tea towels, fabrics, anything that helps to tell the story of your photo. I made a plum and nut cake this afternoon, so I did the whole prop-up-the-cake thing using a tea towel. A casual toss into the corner of the worktop after removing the cake from the oven, and the result worked quite well. At least I think it did….

I was tempted to cut into this beauty, but I held my bottle as it was still too warm straight out of the oven. It does smell delicious though. The recipe is in this week’s Waitrose Weekend magazine.

A warm plum, cinnamon and nut cake.
A warm plum, cinnamon and nut cake.

Can you smell cinnamon, taste ripe, red plums? Naah, neither can I, but it’s pretty.