For over a year now, I've been the lead freelance photographer for Stock and Barrel Magazine, a food and beverage publication here in Columbus, Ohio. Often, assignments get thrown my way with not a lot of time to get them done before deadlines hit. That means I get to shoot a lot of places in a very short amount of time. Oh the joys of the print world! In this article, I'm going to share with you how I shoot food on location quickly. No assistants, minimal gear, during business hours, and without pissing off the chef. Let's get started.
If you've seen our latest comparison between the iPhone X and the Panasonic GH5, you see that the iPhone suits the run-and-gun type of shooter who makes videos on the go where you want the gear to get out of the way with a small and light form factor. In this video, the team at AmnesiArt made a professional video for Elise Lepinteur, the protegee of Christopher Adam, a worldwide famous pastry chef based in Paris, France.
Inspired by a recent photo book I purchased, "Creative Flash Photography" by Tilo Gockel, I set out to create a series of food photos this week as part of a Thai dinner theme my wife and I decided on. The principle here was simple: create a great image using a single speedlight and a bounce card. That’s it.
Sean Tucker started his career as a food photographer and had the chance to work alongside with some of the best food stylists in the industry. Thanks to this experience, he’s learned quite a few secrets one needs to know in order to capture the most stunning food pictures possible. Through this 15-minute long tutorial, Tucker shares some of the fundamental knowledge every photographer and foodies should acquire. So if you’d like to improve or get started with this genre, be sure to check the full video and take notes.
Here we have food tutorial videos inspired by Wes Anderson of "The Grand Budapest Hotel", Quentin Tarantino of "Kill Bill", Alfonso Cuarón of "Children of Men" and "Gravity", and Michael Bay who gave us "Transformers" and "Armageddon". Take yourself out of your regular industry and client mindset and envision yourself in another niche, shooting something you wouldn't normally do. How would you make a food tutorial? How can you use your influences and own unique style to make a video about something different to your usual niche?
We all know the pictures on the packaging of food you buy usually is a lie. It's not how it's going to look when you open it, and it's not going to taste as good as your imagination was telling you it would based on the photo of the package. But it surely works to get people interested and buying one product over the other. How do they do it? This video shares 10 tricks food advertisers use when shooting the images to be used in advertising and packaging. A picture of a piece of bread being broken open, hot and steaming out of the oven, sure looks delicious. Did you know wet cotton wool will steam longer than bread would? Yes, me neither.
Back in 2010, I was commissioned to do a photo of some spices for a family friend. I had never done anything like that, so I wanted to do a good job, and invested in my first off-camera flash setup. It was daunting at first, but I’ll never regret dipping my toes in the water and starting to learn about one of the most important things about being a freelance photographer: learning to control light.
Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market has been my favorite spot for many years. The subtle differences between fish mongers is what adds vibrancy to the colorful characters that make up this market. Most of them have been working here for generations. Located just a two minute walk from Tsukiji train station, it’s a great place to spend the morning taking photos, followed by a very fresh sushi lunch. This has been my routine for the last eight years. The variety of closed and open spaces — from the auction houses to the narrow lane-ways — depict an ambience unlike any other fish market in the world. The bad smell of fish is not really apparent, which confirms the freshness of the product.
A while back, while on a shoot for Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art here in Northwest Arkansas, I was asked to get a shot of the museum’s executive chef and the Director of Culinary for their members magazine. Time was short, the kitchen was starting to prep for dinner service, and every second I was there I was inconveniencing someone. I had to get in and out quickly and create a dynamic image in the process. Here’s how it happened.
Photographer Lois Bielefeld has always loved food; she notes that one of her chores as a child was to make a meal for her family on the weekends. After seeing the way food can bring families and people together, she was inspired to create her series, "Weeknight Dinners," which showcases the various circumstances and family dynamics that bring people together to share a meal.
Nice lighting and a controlled experiment can yield some pretty cool results, and luckily there are folks like the ones behind the brand Beauty of Science who just released a video showing exactly that. Simply put, they dissolved some M&M candy in a dish of water. And it looks amazing.
The art of making food product shots appear mouth-watering and appealing on camera is certainly a well-honed skill. This gift, referred to as food styling, is commonplace on film sets, cooking shows, and food photography. This video by RocketJump Film School explores just how you can improve your own food photography in five simple steps.
Nikon has teamed up with sports photographer Tom Miles and world champion martial artist Tom "Fire Kid" Duquesnoy for its new #MomentOfImpact campaign – which largely involves epic action photos of the latter smashing watermelons, cakes, and pumpkins. Check out the intense photo series here, and learn more about how it was lit and executed.
A couple of years ago I was tasked with getting a shot of grape stomping for a local food magazine, Edible Ozarkansas, who were doing a story on the history of local wine production in Arkansas. Right away, images of Lucy and Ethel of "I Love Lucy" stomping grapes in the giant barrel came scrolling through my mind. Challenge accepted.