Food Photography

So as a food photographer in Shropshire I always look at the photography in cookbooks – some of my favourite ones contain very good recipes as well (although I’ll confess that I’m useless at anything to do with cakes).

Browsing through some cookery books this morning I discovered an old Hamlyn one – probably from the 1970s. It’s interesting to see just how much food photography has changed over the years.

I was chatting to a food photographer at the NEC Birmingham some time ago and we talked about while many clients are happy to have the more modern style of photography characterised by shallow depth of field and creative lighting, there are others who prefer something less “arty”. The old style had lighting from the front, usually angled at about 45 degrees and fairly deep depth of focus which certainly illustrates the dish but does little to create a more artistic representation.

In terms of my own style, I like a main side or backlight for my food photography, with a second light or a reflector pushing up the detail in the shadows. It’s a pleasing look and really does help to make food and drink stand out. I can of course photograph in the “Hamlyn” style of old! So part of my discussion with a new client is to get a good feel for their own preference.

Lit with a single flash in a large softbox positioned behind at 45 degrees, flagged at the edges to create a concentration of light on the main area (the kebabs). Note that the light source is soft enough not to create hard reflections on the tomatoes. Canon 5D Mark IV, 100mm F2.8 lens, 1/160 second @f8.

If you’d like us to photograph your food, please contact us and we’ll send you an estimate!