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Author Topic: Food pics - help required  (Read 4514 times)

RustyTheGeek

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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2012, 01:57:12 AM »
I have assisted with food shots before.  We learned a lot and I can tell you right now that based on three days of shooting (back in the '90's in a hot kitchen), David has already described a better method than the things we attempted and he has gone to great lengths to write a credible tutorial.  We ate a lot of food and took a lot of pictures and in the end the menu used no pictures.  We ended up going with a different design.  It was a bust.  We did use the pictures for the kitchen prep manual and spec book but they weren't good enough for the menu.

And in the McDonald's video above they used what looked like a medium format camera, not a 35mm.  And taking a picture of a single burger is child's play compared to shooting food on a plate!!  It's very difficult to get the food to look dimensional and still be have balanced lighting and have all the food colors look appetizing and saturated.

If you want to see some beautiful food shots, look at the ihop menu.  That food POPS.  Look at many of the restaurant chain websites for their menu to get ideas for food layouts and see if you can pick up clues to how they did the lighting too.

At the very least I think I would set everything up on your own and practice a couple days to see if you can achieve anything acceptable before you waste a lot of time+food and feel disappointed with unexpected failure at the shoot.

Good luck!
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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2012, 01:57:12 AM »

RustyTheGeek

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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2012, 02:05:47 AM »
I would also add that if I had a lot of time and resources and a spacious studio, product photography would be fascinating.  The effects you can achieve with different types of lighting, light tables, shadows and reflections, snoots, etc really present some amazing challenges and when overcome, the photos can be amazing to look at.

I have a book from a "Pro-Lighting" series that shows the lighting setups for a lot of great effect product shots.  Some of it even involves light painting, etc too.  It was from 1994 by Hicks and Schultz.
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brad goda

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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2012, 02:41:34 AM »
scotty

plan and talk over with your friend what kind of look and layout he wants...
what dishes he will want shot... look at them and (scout) plan the angle... whats the edge.
hanging out in the kitchen will get you familiar with the foods "architecture" or presentation.
shoot test angles...
you have enough lens and light...
add cts filtration to your flash to balance tungsten... and test the interior for odd light source that
will complicate your light ( merc vapor metal halide and fl ) sometimes even daylight may not be desired...
test and make notes of conditions...
add diffusion like tracing paper... test it.
add beadboard or foam boards to your gear... not foam core.. foam core is NOT white.

be flexible... the chefs dont always build exactly the same thing the same way...
if you need that you need to hire a food stylist....




NormanBates

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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2012, 06:08:29 AM »
Another fast "product photography" tutorial:

Better Product Shots

Studio1930

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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #19 on: December 19, 2012, 09:38:00 AM »
Food photography is not easy and specialized equipment is needed to make things truly look professional.  But with that being said, you can produce good, usable images if your client/friend is not looking for 1st rate images and just needs something decent to show.

Here are some shots I did for a local restaurant.  I don't consider these anywhere near top rate shots, but they worked for their needs.  I used a tilt shift lens and two large (30x60") softboxes, two 1300 ws mono lights and a slew of flags and grids.  Trying different shadow angles helped produce the depth needed and kept the images from looking too flat.  Each type of food was different as far as lighting needs.

Good luck.




-Darrin
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Re: Food pics - help required
« Reply #19 on: December 19, 2012, 09:38:00 AM »