Feast for the Eyes: Food Photography Tips & Tricks

Camera phones have become the standby tech-weapon-du-jour for many of us. Like little documentarians we wander about recording our daily lives. We steal photos of our environments, pets, plants and people. A critical component to many of our lives is a habit that hardly escapes our scrutiny or our trigger finger, our meals.

Photo: Eunsan Huh

Photo: Eunsan Huh

Do you enjoy the aesthetics of a well prepared spread? Have you sought to record the radiance of a seasonal bouquet of produce? Maybe you’ve tried to nab a shot of your crispy chicken and sweet stamped waffle at brunch only to find that the image is anything but appetizing. Do not be foiled.

Consider this your first foray into the glamourous world of culinary creativity via your mobile phone. In the following weeks be on the look out for additional installments to this food photo compendium.

Each installment of this series will focus on both a behind the lens photography skill (so you get the perfect shot) and an Aviary editing tip (to help you enhance your image).

Behind the lens: Start by electing to take shots of vibrant, colorful, bright foods and meals. It doesn’t matter if your dinner is divine, if the color is monochrome and the texture is mushy, it’s hard to make the food look appealing. If dishes are covered in heaps of brown sauce (like Poutine), it will probably fall flat on your screen too. The more fresh and new the ingredients you select in cooking are, the better they will translate for your audience. Same with meals, do your best to edit yourself. Beautiful foods = beautiful photos.

Edit with Aviary:  Once you have pushed the “button” and taken your shots, you have another opportunity to spice up your masterpiece with the Aviary Food enhancement. Simply open “Enhance” once you’ve selected  your photo from the camera roll. Next, go to the Food tool. The sweet secret about this enhancement is that it boosts the vibrancy (not the saturation) of your provisions while increasing the contrast between smaller details, adds greater sharpness, and creates a vignette to draw the viewer’s eye toward the fetching fare.

Photo: Eunsan Huh

Photo: Eunsan Huh

Give these simple techniques your best shot and surely the quality of your images will improve. Practice with different light angles, surfaces, and amounts of food to see what works best for you. Remember to have fun and find your Food Photography Signature Shot (see hyperlink to my last blog post). Bon Apetit!