Food Photography - How to make it look irresistible and mouthwatering
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March 15, 2019

Celebrity Chef Ranveer Brar once quoted “We eat with our eyes and first impressions are everlastingâ€.  He was spot on with that as I am often impressed with the colorful presentation of the cuisines, be it at restaurants or the food magazines and cookbooks in the advertising industry. Yes, the visual appeal has become a very important factor of the Food industry which brings me to pen my tips on Food Photography.




Food photography isn't just randomly clicking a whats-on-my-plate picture intended for social media. Instead, just like other photography genres, it has some rules that need to be followed if you want to capture images with impressive colors, shapes, and textures.  Read on to find out more about these rules.


Background – The background is very important while clicking Food.  Ensure that you are presenting less food on the plate as an overcrowded plate looks far less appetizing.  Use a neutral background. Typically, a dark, white or wooden background work really well for Food Photography.  You may also use other backgrounds like a table cloth with a subtle floral design or a baking tray or a neutral colored wall.  


Tip:  If you are confused about the background, go for the classic white plates.  Black works well for red and white colored food.


ood, Dessert, Background, No One, Fruit

Arrange the Food-  The way the food is arranged is as important as the way it is photographed.  Pay attention to the balance. While arranging a colorful item ensure that there are not more than three colors on the plate.  A combination of a lot of colors is too confusing to see and can also make your plate look messy at times. Play around with vegetables and fruits as you can cut them into similar shapes and create some interesting patterns on your plate.  You may also surround your dish with some ingredients and props that relate to the main dish.


ruit, Watermelon, Fruits, Heart


Lights – Since food photography is mostly done indoors, it is absolutely essential to have quality lighting to get good pictures.  The lights can be angled to create shadows and accentuate the colors of the ingredients and create depth which would give us a more visually appealing image.


While natural light is the best source of light for food photography don’t forget to place a diffuser as it improves the quality of your pictures.  You can also get good images when using artificial indoor lights. Use reflectors in such a way that it bounces the light back over the food.


Angle- As a food photographer, you should be able to capture the ‘wow’ factor of the dish.  It is your job to analyze what is it about a specific dish that makes it look delicious and distinctive and then clicks the picture in such a way that showcases those elements.  Choosing your angle wisely will define the story you want to tell.


The three main angles are overhead, 45 degrees and the front angle.  There can be variations to these but fundamentally these are the main ones.


aspberry, Berry, Summer, Closeup, Harvest, Ripe, Bowl


The 45-degree angle usually shows the front and the surface of the dish.   The overhead angle is good for including multiple elements in the scene, like a tablescape.  You can see a variety of props or dishes of food in the frame. A texture which is an important part of food photography can be highlighted very well with an overhead angle.   The front angle is more suited for food that is tall. Eg: A burger, ice cream, etc. It emphasizes the height of the food. The objective should be to highlight the best feature of the dish.


ce Cream Cone, Melting, Hot

My Golden rule for Food photography: does it look delicious?  A good photo can make your mouth salivate and impossible to think of anything else.  Experiment with these tips in your own kitchen and do share your pictures with us on

Blog courtesy: By Deepa Jathar



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