Written by Mark Mendoza on April 20, 2018
I recently got the chance to shoot some delicious mac ’n cheese for Mr. Mac’s in Manchester, New Hampshire. Tasked with capturing their dishes, restaurant, employees and more, I had the privilege of revamping their website with a mouth-watering crop of new photos!
Eating a delicious meal is an experience for all five senses, and if I can create photos that make the viewer feel like he could reach out and take a bite of that decadent pasta, I’ve done my job right.
But there’s a lot that goes into food photography behind the scenes, and not just anyone with a camera can pull it off. Believe it or not, it’s one of the most challenging things to shoot! There’s such a broad variety of food out there, and it takes a very skilled photographer make it look great.
Once a dish is set in front of a camera, there’s a limited window of time before it melts, wilts, dries out or otherwise loses its fresh-out-of-the-kitchen shine. An experienced photographer is prepared to get good shots quickly and capture the food when it looks its best.
What’s more, you cannot compromise on lighting when you’re shooting food. Lighting makes a huge difference in food photography, and without the right know-how, your meals will look mediocre. Each dish also needs to be styled to look just right— what’s pleasing to the eye doesn’t necessarily translate to looking great on camera! On shoots where I’m not working with a food stylist, I bring a food styling kit with me to help every dish look its most appetizing.
All this is to say, food photography calls for a knowledgeable, versatile pro in a big way.
Apart from shooting a wide variety of dishes, a food photographer needs to be prepared to capture many elements of the client’s brand. In many cases, the client needs shots of the restaurant interiors, meal preparation, the staff and more on top of the dishes themselves— there are oftentimes many needs that fall under the “food photography” umbrella.
This flexibility is a crucial marker of a seasoned food photographer, and if you’re serious about getting standout results, you definitely don’t want to settle for less.
I love tackling the challenge of food photography, so if you’re looking for a qualified pro to capture your food service, drop me a line and let’s talk!
Tags: food photography, professional food photographe