How I Edit My Food Photographs

Each niche in photography has its own requirements when it comes to post-production. In this video, I go over my process for editing images in Adobe Lightroom.

As with everything in photography, there is usually more than one way to go about a task, and editing images is no exception. I have recently jumped ship to Capture One, but I thought a video on my Lightroom work would be of use to more people. There are also loads of similarities between Capture One processing and Lightroom, so regardless of what you use, you can probably manage to relate the method and thought process to your editing software. 

I have chosen one of my oldest food photographs that has plenty of flaws in it, as correcting a really well-taken image is never as challenging as correcting something that you have made a bit of a bodge of. 

Over the years, I have come up with a pretty straightforward and formulaic way to color-grade and quickly edit my images. It usually takes me around two minutes to grade an image like this, although it would take me a lot longer to edit someone else's work, as I now shoot in a very specific manner to reach my final goal. As a full disclaimer, anything that requires any real retouching skill, I send to a professional retoucher, but for the vast majority of my editorial work, where budgets are tight, I color-grade myself. 

Lightroom is a great asset to food photographers, and the simple color-grading system works brilliantly. Before this, I use to struggle away in Photoshop with layers, but I found this a much quicker way to process my images. More recently, I have moved over to Capture One, as Lightroom is dogged with tether issues, speed issues, and unlike Capture One, it doesn't allow for live view without a really long workaround through Canon EOS utility that in itself is a real nightmare to stay connected to. For a food photographer, especially one who specializes in flat lays, live view straight into the editing software is a lifesaver. 

How do you go about editing your images, and what do you do differently than me?

Log in or register to post comments

2 Comments

Andy Day's picture

That was great. Thanks for putting it together!

Scott Choucino's picture

No worries Andy. Once I find some other photos that need very different processing, I plan to do the same to them.