Food Styling is one of those things that you never knew you needed when you start food blogging. When I started, it was all about Restaurant Reviews. Then when I started adding some recipes, the requirements changed dramatically. Up until then, I was taking really dark pictures shoot-and-run pictures with my Digital Camera.
After looking at a lot of food magazines and attending a couple of workshops, I have picked up quite a few tricks along the way.
The Top Tips for Food Styling and Photography are:
- Daylight, Daylight, Daylight
This seems to be the preferred lighting to shoot with, usually with the light coming in sideways on the subject.
2. Lots of Props
If you look closely at lots of food photos, they are always on colourful plates, beautifully arranged food, lots of old linen for texture, sitting on a distressed wood table or one painted turquoise, sometimes muted, moody lighting.
Most food stylists have their own style.
3. Less is more, don’t overload the plate
You will start to artfully arrange the food to make it look pretty on the dish. No more slapdash, pile on a bucket full of beige pasta on a white plate. If you plan to eat what you are photographing as well, expect it to be quite cold when you are done.
4. Use a light box
If you must take pictures at night under artificial light, use a light box setting which simulates day light. Not the best result but better than harsh fluorescent.
5. Create your own style.
Recently, at a Baked in Style Masterclass on Food Styling with Mademoiselle Poirot ( Carole Poirot) She walked us through her thinking when she sets up a food styled shot.
If you look at Carole’s Instagram account, you can see that her style has a very muted and under saturated palette. If you are looking for some tips, study her account for the colour and the style. I learnt a few new tricks like sprinkling flour, sugar or other ingredients all around the final product.
With the team at L’Atelier Des Chefs and Neff, we baked a Hazelnut Torte and created our own styled set up for the ultimate cake photo.
The team at L’Atelier Des Chefs led us through this simple Hazelnut Torte Recipe. Within out team of 5, we all did one of the processes and in no time, it was ready to bake.
After being shown that the Neff ovens that they use are fully operable at the selected temperature even with the doors open. We were quite tempted to try this out. The doors for these ovens slide away under the oven, a great little feature.
When our cake was baked, we sliced it in half and added some cooked apple and Apricot jam in the middle layer. To finish, a light dust of icing sugar finished the look. Our cake was then ready for its close up.
Using a bright white cake stand, our cake looked very plain. A light dusting of cocoa powder on the plate helped break up the white. Given free reign on Carol’s props and fresh flowers, our group created a lovely autumnal still life as seen below.
The cloth was directed in a way to help the eyes flow. All the props was a result of too many cooks but it didn’t look too bad in the end. What do you think ?
You can get more inspirations on home baking here.
Thanks to Neff, L’atelier des Chefs and Carole for a really fun day baking and food styling.