6 Tips for Getting Started in Food Photography

In 2020, there are 110,000 photography jobs out there. If you’re interested in getting one of those jobs, you may want to get into food photography.

But what should you know about professional food photography? You can go to food photography school and take courses, but many food photography tips can help you get started.

If you’re looking for the right tips to land a food photography job or hone in on your hobby, keep reading!

1. Choose the Right Camera

You’ll first want to make sure that you get the right camera so that you’re set up for success. You don’t need a fancy camera, but you should get one that has manual options so you can tailor your settings.

The best camera to get for food photography is a DSLR camera. These cameras will let you have full control over the focal length and exposure. Nike and Canon are the two most popular DSLRs, and they’re very similar.

However, one factor to consider is the price. When in doubt, read reviews to see what cameras would work best for you. And then you may even want to visit a photography store or rent gear from and test the cameras out for yourself.

2. Know-How to Use Lighting

You’ll also need to learn how to use food photography lighting to your advantage. Whenever possible, use natural light. Professional lights might be able to mimic that, but it can sometimes make the food look different.

However, ensure that you don’t use indoor kitchen lighting. This tends to have a yellow glow, and it can make your food photos look unappealing. If you need to use that lighting, try to change the settings on your camera to compensate for that yellow glow.

You’ll also want to consider which direction the light is coming from. Backlit lighting is a technique that a lot of food photographers use, and it’s very popular.

However, many people want to stand facing the subject with a window on the side of the food. Experiment with different light placements to see what the most appealing lighting is best for your food.

You may even want to let the light hit from the front and the side to see which lighting is the best. You’ll also want to consider the weather and the type of dish you’re trying to photograph.

3. Use Fresh Ingredients

When you’re taking photos, make sure that the food looks good. Some photographers will even use fake food since actual food may not look as appealing, especially if you’re going to be photographing for hours.

If you are photographing for a great chef, then the chef will be able to make something visually appealing. However, if you’re photographing your own food, remember that sometimes simple is best.

You could arrange the food in a visually appealing and minimalist way. You can even use appealing plates or bowls to highlight the food.

4. Know Your Angles

One of the most common angles you can use when photographing food is the 45-degree angle. This will show the food as if someone was sitting down and getting ready to eat it.

This is one of the best angles because it can show the width of the food, and it’ll also show all of the textures. It also tends to focus on the front of the dish.

You may even want to shoot your food from the top down. This means that you’ll stand overhead of the food and shoot down. This will show the entire dish, but you may not be able to get as much of the texture as you would like.

Some people also want to shoot at a straight-on angle. This will show the height of the food, which is great for something that is stacked or has multiple layers.

5. Know-How to Plate Food

You’ll also want to figure out who should be the star of your food photo. For example, if you’re making steaks with some sides, then you should focus on the steaks in the photo and try to show as much texture as possible.

If you’re photographing food bowls, make sure that they’re full. Even if the serving of something will fill up half of the bowl, just fill it up for this photo. Just make sure that it doesn’t overflow.

If you don’t have enough food, try using smaller bowls or plates as well. Large plates and bowls can overwhelm the food and make it even more difficult to fill it with more food.

You should also make sure that if you’re adding sauce, don’t soak the food until you’re ready to start shooting. While you’re finding the perfect angle, the sauce can soak the food and make it soggy, ruining your photo.

6. Learn How to Edit

When you’re done taking photos, you’ll need to edit them. The goal is to take great photos that don’t require a lot of editing, but you will still need to do a little bit of editing.

You should be shooting in RAW images and then use Photoshop or Lightroom to edit those images. If you shot a lot of photos in the same lighting, then you can create a batch edit and apply them to all your photos from that session.

Discover More Tips to Get Started in Food Photography

These are only a few tips to get started in food photography, but there are many more tips out there to help you take great photos.

Whether you’re photographing food, landscapes, people, or more, there is a lot to learn when you get into photography.

Check out our website to find even more great tips to help you in your photography journey.

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