Spice it Up, With These Food Photography Tips

I’m taking today off to celebrate National Blame Someone Else day.  Trust me, it’s their fault, not mine.  Anyway, I wouldn’t want to leave you empty-handed on Friday the 13th so here’s a nice article from contributing blogger, Sarah Scrafford.  Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend.

There’s a love affair between the camera and food that goes beyond the physical dimension – in the eyes of the lens, food tends to look more palatable and delicious than it often is, and this is because of the innate ability of the photographer behind the camera. You would think that clicking food is not that hard, but there’s a lot of work and preparation that goes into every shot. If you want to photograph food well enough to induce mouth-watering sensations, here’s what you need to do:

Cater to Color: Colors and shapes make all the difference when you’re photographing food. A splash of brightness can liven up a dull picture; contrasting colors can add more vivacity to a photo; and garnishing can add spice to even the most bland looking (and tasting) foods. Use colors to their natural advantage; nature is rich in foods that are vibrantly colored; all you need to do is pick and choose the right ones to accentuate your photo.


Photo by www.hafizismail.net

Plan the Palette: Some foods like ice cream tend to melt if you leave them long enough when planning your shot. Use temporary props in place of your food when setting the stage so that you can get your shot done with in a matter of minutes once the food is ready.


Photo by fensterbme

Adopt Accessories: Choose your crockery and cutlery with care to offset the color and nature of the food you’re photographing. Get creative with accessories and use them as artistic props for the photo even if they don’t serve any useful purpose.


Photo by sonicwalker

Lead with the Lens: If you want really good pictures, I would suggest you trade in your point-and-shoot model for a DSLR camera, and that you buy the lenses separately so that you have a faster shutter speed at your disposal. Shutter speed is important for indoor photography when there’s not much natural light available.


Photo by adactio

Bet on Backgrounds: Decide on appropriate backgrounds for your shot. More importantly, clear out unwanted objects that are in the vicinity of your shot so that they don’t clutter up your picture.


Photo by Wesley Oostvogels

Learn about Light: Avoid direct sunlight or any artificial light that’s harsh when photographing food. Instead, go in for diffused natural light and refrain from using your flash.


Photo by www.hafizismail.net

Parts of the Process: Food is much more than just the finished product – add flavor to your photographs by taking pictures of the process of making food, the ingredients, the methods, and the preparatory stages.


Photo by Éole

Food photography is a double delight – not only does it showcase your appetite for good food, it also demonstrates your passion for photography.

This article is contributed by Sarah Scrafford, who regularly writes on the topic of MFA in Photography. She invites your questions, comments and freelancing job inquiries at her email address: sarah.scrafford25@gmail.com.


  1. Your blog gets better and better I have to say. Compared to a lot of other blogs I read where they are starting to run out of new ideas, this one was great before and I think you’ve stepped it up several notches over the last few months.

    Will be trying out some food photography soon I think.

    Keep up the good work.


  2. Great tips – at least food doesn’t move!

  3. I spent half of yesterday evening trying to capture a few photos of food and preparation. Wish I had seen this post before then. Thanks for the helpful tips.

  4. Just noticed that this was contributed by Sarah Scrafford. So a big thumbs up to her too.


  1. Spice it Up With These Food Photography Tips…

    Thinking about doing some food photography? Before you do, check out these great tips!…

  2. carlweaver says:

    Great tips for food photography: http://tinyurl.com/dlefqj

  3. […] Set the stage before the food: Use temporary props to get your shot ready so you can switch it out quickly when the food is ready. […]

Speak Your Mind