Last week, Willy has had the pleasure to conduct a workshop at World Gourmet Summit 2010: An Afternoon of Photography Appreciation with Leica. Together with food stylist, Chef Anderson Ho, they share tips on food photography and styling techniques at Singapore Tourism Board’s Auditorium.
A shiny, metallic surface to demonstate reflection. The ‘before’ shot.
The setup. Using clamps to hold the styrofoam boards to bounce off light in a certain direction and having black cardboards as background to provide an edge for light reflection.
Chef Anderson, on the other hand, is preparing the hero dish. It is interesting to note that food for photography should not be eaten (unless you wish to) as they are specially handled. This means to say that the food are either not fully cooked (as above, Chef is just flaming the squid for its visual appeal)… or you just don’t want to eat them upon seeing how they are being handled during preparation.
A small step ladder comes into handy in this case.
One trick to make your food shine – glycerin. You can opt for egg white as a more readily available option.
Getting the aperture, ISO and white balance right is just the first step. The purpose of food photography is to represent the dish at its best in a single shot. You will have to twig its ingredients around for it to look tastier.
Pulling the clam from behind the pasta and adjusting the position and angle of each clam to reveal the juices they contain.
You may also wish to consider what you would like to highlight in the dish, and ensuring that other ingredients do not steal its limelight. Therefore, it usually takes quite some time to manually adjust not only the settings of the camera, but also the presentation of dishes.
Due to a shortage of time, we didn’t manage to demonstrate capisicums being dunked into water as we had originally intended to. Click here to view the shots that we have done in our studio.