As a new food blogger, one of my biggest challenges has been photographing the food I make. Good food photos are important for a food blog. Even the newest food bloggers learn one thing very fast, Pinterest is a huge driver of traffic. For Pinterest to work for your food blog, you need enticing photos.

When I saw Jane Windham’s request for blogging tutorials on her site, Cottage at the Crossroads, I knew I wanted to help out as best I could but being a new blogger myself, I wasn’t sure how. Then I thought I could share what I am learning–slowly–about food photography. If you take a look at my blog, you can see it is definitely something I need to learn more about!

I have been searching the web for tips on better food photography and have found a variety of helpful websites and blogs. One of the biggest lessons I have learned is to choose natural lighting over artificial for food photos as much as possible. My last blog entry was a sloppy joe recipe. I took lots of photos in my kitchen, but it was evening and the light coming through the windows wasn’t strong, so I took a plateful outside. I think the sloppy joe looked much better in the natural light.

Another photography issue I wanted to find out more about: Do you need an expensive camera and equipment? I have a simple point and shoot camera my kids bought me a few years ago that I have been hoping would at least help get my blog started. I think the cheapo camera is fine as long as you pay attention to other details. There are many great blogs with photographs taken with less expensive equipment.

There are many things to consider when taking photographs of food. Here are a few inspirational places to start for the basics of food photography:

The Huffington Post article, “How to Photograph Food Without a Fancy Camera” offers plenty of good food photography tips at the beginner level, no expensive equipment needed. It covers topics like shooting angles, cropping and lighting. The article states “Please don’t use flash”, which seems to be a recurring theme throughout the sites I visited. A comment on this post reads: I’ve found that using the brightness/contrast filter in PS (Photoshop) allows me to avoid using a flash, which is the kiss of death when doing close-ups of food.”

Are you a visual learner? I love this slideshow of photography tips on the Huffington Post website, “How to Snap Pictures of Your Holiday Food that Look Good Enough to Eat” by Lou Manna.  It includes tips for bloggers using a higher end camera.

Here’s another article with simple, easy to use tips for better photos. “5 Tips for Food Photography” from ABeautifulMess.com, written by Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman. This is a “working” food, DIY, fashion, inspirational (lots of good stuff!) blog. If you are new to blogging, you might find some of their other tutorials helpful, such as “5 Tips for Bloggers” and “How to Start Your Blog with a Bang“.

Speaking of inspirational, foodie blog JustaTaste.com, has some gorgeous food photos that made me want to eat my computer! Instead, I just “pinned” a ton of them. The creator of the site is chef and professional food photographer Kelly Senyei. She is also the author of the new book, “Food Blogging for Dummies”.  I haven’t read it but if her blog is any indication, it’s got to be worth a look. By the way, she shoots her food photos in natural light only.

For more in depth study, try the website Gourmande In the Kitchen. It is written by Sylvie Shirazi,  who states in her bio, “Join me as I pursue life with a camera in one hand and a fork in the other!”. Also a food blog with mouthwatering photos, the site offers a series “Language of Food Photography”. The free series includes “Principles of Design”, “Food Styling”, and “Finding your Style”, among other topics. In addition, they include a few other articles, such as “Finding Props for Food Photography” with Naomi Robinson and “Learning Your Camera and How to Shoot Moody Images” by professional photographer Peter Georgakopoulos. You will find all the articles listed here on the GourmandeInTheKitchen.com page, Photography.

Are you looking for an in-depth guide to gorgeous food photos? Pinch of Yum has an excellent step-by-step food photography ebook. I purchased the book several months ago and have been very happy with it. As you can see by my blog entries, it has helped me so much. Of course, I still have a way to go!

The ebook covers all the essentials including:

  • Lighting
  • Composition
  • Food props
  • Editing
  • and more…

 

Tasty Food Photography eBook

 

Full disclosure, this is an affiliate link, however, I only recommend it because I use it and am quite happy with my purchase.

I am happy to learn I don’t have to buy an expensive camera to get great food shots for my blog. I hope you find these sites to be as inspirational and helpful as I did. Good Luck!

What do you think? Have you been happy with your food photos? Do you agree natural light is the best way to go? Leave me a message, would love to hear from you :) Di

Attn Mommy Bloggers: Want to pin more of your posts? Check out: http://www.cookthetv.com/2012/08/want-to-pin-more-of-your-blog/

Curious to learn more about food photography? Here’s one more article on AtThePicketFence, especially for bloggers: http://www.atthepicketfence.com/2011/04/you-asked-for-it-and-were-giving-it-to.html?showComment=1343662172570#c95772437043908720

  • skoots1mom July 30, 2012, 5:18 pm

    food sharing is huge on the internet; and i LOVE the good pics…thanks!

    Reply
    • Di Jinx July 30, 2012, 7:13 pm

      Hi SkootsMom, Thank you so much! I love the way you put that, “Food Sharing”. I’m gonna use that, if you don’t mind:)
      Thanks for stopping by:) Di

      Reply
  • Leigh Powell Hines (Hines-Sight Blog) July 30, 2012, 7:57 pm

    Great tips. Food photography is very hard. I”m not really a food blogger, but I am a travel/lifestyle blogger so I eat in restaurants a lot. It’s so hard to get decent photos in dark restaurants.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Di Jinx July 30, 2012, 9:13 pm

      Hi Leigh, thanks so much for dropping by and commenting:) One of the blogs I mentioned had an article on restaurant food photography by Brian Samuals. I went back and found it for you:
      http://gourmandeinthekitchen.com/2012/restaurant-photography-tips-brian-samuels/
      Brian also has his own blog called athoughtforfood.net. He has a series called Silent Sundays with photographs from his travels…pretty cool. Thanks again! Di

      Reply
  • Jane@Cottage at the Crossroads July 31, 2012, 12:24 am

    Hi Di,
    Thanks so much for linking up to our party. I read your post with great interest because I struggle with food photography. I do not have good natural light in my kitchen and I’m still working with my little point and shoot. And I’m playing more with food styling now. Thanks for providing so many links for additional information on this topic.

    Reply
    • Di Jinx July 31, 2012, 12:31 am

      Hi Jane, I’m so glad you stopped by. Thank you for your comment. It’s definitely still a struggle for me also. I enjoyed your party so much, you really got a lot of great linkups. I visited several of them. Really good info. It will be such a help to me in future. Thanks so much for organizing it:)Di

      Reply
  • Jocelyn August 1, 2012, 1:20 pm

    You are so right…the better the food pictures the more chance you have of someone finding your recipe online. Pinterest is huge now and people are very vision oriented. Thanks for all the great photography links to check out!! I have been learning so much about natural lighting and presentation this year and I can’t wait to read more.

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 1, 2012, 2:34 pm

      Hi Jocelyn, Thanks for checking out my post. I just posted this at your Trick or Treat Tuesday party and also “Carla Hall’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie”. Looks like you got some great submissions, I will have to check some out:) thanks again for stopping by:) Di

      Reply
  • Ann from On Sutton Place August 2, 2012, 1:00 am

    I think food photography is so hard…probably why I don’t post many recipes. :o) Great tips though and thank you for linking up to our party!

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 2, 2012, 6:12 pm

      Hi Ann, thanks so much for dropping by. Yes, it is hard, takes a lot of practice. Love you blog. Thanks again, Di

      Reply
    • Di Jinx August 2, 2012, 6:13 pm

      lol, love YOUR blog!

      Reply
  • the wife August 4, 2012, 1:24 pm

    Thanks for the fantastic tips! I shoot all my food pictures with my camera phone. Oddly, it’s the best camera we have in the house…

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 4, 2012, 8:52 pm

      Lol, well you gotta work with what you’ve got! Thanks for stopping by:) Di

      Reply
  • montana mama August 4, 2012, 1:46 pm

    Thanks for sharing these tips! I’ve been debating on upgrading to a much better/more expensive camera to get better pics for my blog but feel like I need to try to improve my skills with the camera we have before forking out a ton of cash for a better camera. These links will definitely help me so thank you for sharing! annie @ montanasolarcreations

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 4, 2012, 8:54 pm

      Hi Annie, yes, that’s exactly how I feel about it. Cameras can really get expensive and I have no idea which one to buy anyway. Thanks for commenting. Here’s to us both getting better:) Di

      Reply
  • DEANNE MORSE August 4, 2012, 5:14 pm

    THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS POST, I AM VERY HIT AND MISS WITH MY PHOTOS, SOMETIMES I CAN DO KILLER PHOTOS AND SOMETIMES NOT SO MUCH ( MOST TIMES IF TRUTH BE TOLD) THANKS AGAIN!! DEANNE @ DELIGHTFUL CURIOSITY

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 4, 2012, 8:56 pm

      Hi Deanne, yes, I know exactly what you mean. If you look around my site, you will see the same thing going on here. I hope these links help:) Thanks for coming by :)Di

      Reply
  • Kelley Wilson August 6, 2012, 11:01 pm

    OK now I am so super glad I found you, this is so great, why is it that food comes off yellow when you photograph inside in the evening, I have that problem all the time

    Reply
  • Di Jinx August 7, 2012, 12:10 pm

    Hi Kelley, yes I absolutely have that problem to, you can see it in several of my photos. I think it’s just the lighting. And then if you try to use flash it is definitely not good. I have started taking my food outside and photographing it. I even
    saved leftovers one day and reheated next morning, took outside and photographed! lol Thanks again for stopping by Kelley:)Di

    Reply
  • Angela August 9, 2012, 4:21 am

    Thank you, thank you, thank you so much for posting this, I am a newbie food blogger and I already figured out no flash is best but its hard sometimes on a dull day or at night like you say, I also do step by step photos, yikes,so they all need to be bright, but I am still learning, this is great information, I pinned this too, hope you dont mind :)

    Reply
    • Di Jinx August 9, 2012, 11:36 am

      Hi Angela, yes I think lighting is so key, and maybe even more so for those of us getting by with cheap cameras. I saw your site and I think you have great photos…I really wanted to jump through the computer and eat those profitiroles! thanks for stopping by:) Di

      Reply
  • Heather Kinnaird August 9, 2012, 5:37 am

    GREAT tips! Photography is probably the hardest part of blogging -especially when you have a dark kitchen

    Reply
  • Di Jinx August 9, 2012, 11:16 am

    Hi Heather, thanks for stopping by. Yes, I agree but I do think you have some amazing food photos on your site:) Thanks,Di

    Reply

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