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Mark's Tips on Food Blogging Photography!

Mark's Tips on Food Blogging Photography!
What If You Don’t Have A Fancy Camera?
Most people shoot on their iPhones or a Point and Shoot camera, and of course, you can always invest in a more expensive camera. Let’s see a photo illustrating the difference between the three.
iPhones tend to lose detail. They just aren’t sophisticated enough to catch every nuance of the subject you are shooting. With food, texture is everything. It gives you a sensory idea of what the food will be like to consume, which is important to enticing a reader. You see the difference in the Point and Shoot. Significant difference in seeing the texture of the food and the over all clarity of the photo helps create a depth and character to the photo. Of course, the best photo is going to be taken with a professional grade camera. The settings available for such a camera ensure the best possible photo. You don’t necessarily need a fancy camera. As we saw with the Point and Shoot, we got a great photo. If your blog becomes your main source of income, you may want to invest in one. But you can get fantastic results form what you already have. Whatever you do, invest in a tripod. They are dirt-cheap and they make the difference between a shaking blurred image and one with clarity. You also have more control over the final image.

Lighting

Lighting is everything. If you don’t do anything else, put your energy into lighting. You might want to invest in something this simple; you don’t have to go all out with a full lighting rig. However, when you are starting out, you can use simple objects to maximize your lighting. You need two things: your main light source and your back light. And remember, the closer your main light source is to the object, the softer your light will be. The back light fills the spaces not filled by the source light and helps create contrast.

Good Lighting Without Fancy Equipment?

Use the light that is available: outdoor light. You can shoot outside or inside near a good source of the day light. Then you can use things that are easy to find to help focus that light source, or enhance it. I have a simple White and Black Cardstock Poster board, which you can get for $1.50 at any craft store. The white side reflects light, adding to your course light, and the black absorbs the light, taking away from it. You can also use a plain old mirror to catch the light and direct it to your white balance boards and create highlights on your object. If you want to not use natural light, you can buy a flood light and use that as your light source. You can find one at any home improvement store for under $20. Just make sure that whatever lights you are using are the same type. Meaning, if you are mixing natural light and a bulb, make sure that bulb is balanced to mimic daylight. Mixing lighting types will affect the warmth of the lighting.
How Do You Know If You Are Framing Correctly?

The simple rule is frame only what you want to see. Be aware of what else is being photographed. Experiment with your framing. The eye starts form the Left and works to the right and down. So let that influence the composition of your photograph. Once you have your image, we can experiment in post. Let’s look at the hamburger. We see the fries and the iced tea. But we want to focus on the burger. And we have all of this empty space around it taking our eyes away from the burger. We need to get rid of that empty space. We also only need a suggestion of the drink and fries, so if we crop them out partially, we get the benefit of the set dressing and still focus on the star: the burger.

Food Blogging Photography with Mark

Mark demonstrates how to snap the perfect shot for a food blog with proper lighting and framing.

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