Props for Food Photography
Blogging Marathon# 42: Week 3/ Day 2
Theme: Misc Food Related -- Behind the Food Photos
Props used in a food photo can really make or break a food photo. A well styled and presented photo is a definite plus to any food blog. Props include your serve ware, napkins and everything else that is used in the photo.
I am always amazed how some bloggers have the eye for styling their pictures. The whole setup looks well thought of and the props are placed in strategic locations drawing the eye exactly to the main attraction or the hero of the photo which is the dish that is being presented. This is an art that some have within themselves and some of us need to see and learn. I'm not a very creative person, but I take inspiration from various sources to come up with something that is not exactly the copy of the original but a close representation of it. This below is one such inspired photo.
Food magazines like Saveur, Bon Appetit etc., have beautiful food photos that are drool worthy and very inspiring. Reviewing the photos of the numerous food bloggers and food photographers on the styling, lighting etc., will give us some tips and ideas on presenting and taking our own food photos. Another good source is food photography books like Helen Dujardin's Plate to Pixel or Nicole Young's Food Photography.
Coming to today's topic of 'Props for Food Photography'. First thing to discuss is the dishes and cutlery to use in the photos. I'm sure all of us have a lot of them already at home, but if you are like any average food blogger, you want and need more. For that good places to start are thrift stores, garage sales, regular grocery stores, specialty stores and so on. I buy most of my dishes on sale from Pier One, Crate & Barrel, Home Goods etc. Ikea is also one of my favorite store for prop shopping. Here are a few props that I bought in garage sales this spring/ summer.
The second topic to discuss in props is what to use in a photo. One thing I have read many many times is that you have to think of the setting/ story for your photo before actually taking the picture. For example, you want to take a picture of the hot pakoras that you just made, then the setting could be evening tea time. So that gives you an idea to place some tea cups, may be a tea kettle or anything that gives you the idea of tea time in the photo. So always think of a story/ setting before taking your picture. If you can't come up with anything, then simply place a nice place mat or napkin in the background for some pop of color and texture.