I cannot emphasize that point enough...on a blog, pictures are everything. And I mean EV-REE-THING. It's the picture that "sells" you. When you get a picture or walk past a magazine of some really good looking food, what's the first thing that goes through your mind? "Hmm....that looks good..." And what next, "That must taste good." And that merely based on it's "looks" (it's looks meaning, 1) looks, and 2) lighting and 3) positioning... the cleanliness of the plate and all of the details that are all around. It can't just taste good. It's got to look good. This a (visual) BLOG after all. So with that said, I am going to give you some of my all-time favorite foodie tricks because it's my passion that you see in what I capture both on the plate and on the screen.
Tip #1: Good Lighting/Natural Lighting
Okay, so you're having to take the picture with your cell phone (for whatever the reasons be). Trick number one: don't worry about the background, just get that plate into some natural light. The background is secondary. If I see that odd, doors and windows are closed yellow light, you are not going to sell me as you would if you too your picture with the natural light flowing in, like you see on the cover of so many magazines;)
Tip #2: Get down on the level WITH the food.
Yes honey, stoop down. This is your food after all. Your product and your baby. You have made it, now go and show that thing off, and proud. Stoop down and get on the same level as the counter or plate. Wherever the surface of your food item, I want you down on it's level. Not these wierd above shots. Now don't get me wrong, sometimes there's good in getting an above shot, to show a different angle. (I know what you're thinking...."but you do it..." Yes, but I only and I emphasize only do it to show a different angle.) Why? Because, I want you to approach my plate, not look in at a distance. I am drawing you in with my pictures. And I am not going to do that at a distance;)
Tip #3: NOW, set the plate/setting
This is not the first step. Why? Because you have to "respect the food" and treat it with dignity. And once you've done that then you set the space. And what do I mean? If it's a dish that you eat with a fork, go grab a clean fork and set it on the edge of the plate. Literally, make it look like, all that the reader has to do is to pick up the fork and start eating or...just take a bite. It has to look that appealing and with the first to steps in place, you're good.
If it's a Thanksgiving or a Christmas meal, if you have it, go ahead and grab a nice holiday napkin, fold it, and set it under the plate just to the left.
Got an idea for a breakfast in bed, write a little "possible note" to your honey, and fold the card at the top and set it next to the plate (on the right) to give your reader an idea of what they can do to make someone feel special. In fact, your reader might even say inside, "my I'd feel good if that note/meal was prepared for me". It's the reader's feelings and experience that you are giving and the story in essence that you are telling with your pictures.
Won't you try these tips out today? Okay, even if you're going to take a picture of your food with your phone, I want you to find a window, and make sure that it's during the day, put the plate on the counter, bend down with your phone at eye-level and then snap your picture and email it to me (firstname.lastname@example.org) I can't wait to hear from you!