HOW TO MAKE #FOODPORN EPIC
What’s that? You went out for lunch and didn’t take a picture of your superfood salad!? Who even are you…
We’re joking of course. Granted, snapping your meals isn’t the be all and end all, but we do live in a world where taking pictures of everything (and we mean everything) has become common practice. So, get that iPhone poised and ready for its #FoodPorn moment. If you're new to snapping when snacking, we've got some great tips to get you started. And if you’ve already got a portfolio of meals on your Instagram, there’s always room for improvement.
Here are seven easy tips to help you hone those photography skills
- Lighting is king and natural lighting at that. Always make sure you’ve got a decent light source to work with. Keep it simple: a large window will work perfectly so long as it has plenty of outdoor exposure. Make sure you’ve either got, or can put your setting directly beside the window pane with no obstructions: that way you’ll avoid any shadows falling on the food.
- Clear the area. Honestly, the last thing you want is to take a great snap only to see a random wrapper or set of keys has crept into the frame. A few minutes of making sure your space is clean and clear will make a big difference. You won’t be kicking yourself later or hectically cropping out that irritating item you wish you’d removed.
- Take time to set the composition (sounds fancy, right?). You wouldn’t get dressed without thinking and the same applies to photography. Play about before you shoot. Choose the bit you want to focus on (such as the plate of food) and accessorise the surrounding area. This is a great way to balance the picture and add depth. For example, placing some cutlery far back in the frame means you can focus on the main element and fade out the distant ones. Similarly, if your focus is on the bottom left corner then scatter some other elements in the top right. You get the idea.
- Work with colour. Food looks best when it’s natural (why else do you think they scrapped the blue smarties…). So, use bright and natural colours when you can. On occasions where colour may be limited, don’t panic! Accenting with fresh herbs is an easy way to freshen up your images. There are loads of herbs or leaves that work for savoury dishes. For sweet ones, mint or basil fit well. We often find that a sprig of mint on the top of a scoop of Madagascan Vanilla helps to take a shot to the next level.
- Work fast, but be calm. Sounds like a contradiction but we promise you it’s not. Have everything ready so you can shoot your food as quickly as you can once it’s on the plate. It’s amazing how quickly food melts (we should know!), wilts or just loses that moment of pure indulgence. If you’ve experimented with the layout beforehand, you’ll know what angles work best and you’ll probably work much quicker. It’s also important to stay calm; often the best picture will either be the first, when the food is its freshest, or the last when you’re the most relaxed.
- The great thing about food photography is its ability to tell a story beyond what it shows. Simply including some of the raw ingredients you’ve used in the dish shows, though subtly, both the natural aspect and the cooking process behind it. Popping two spoons into one bowl tells us something is being shared. Whatever way you choose to do it, think about how your pictures can be more than just pictures of food because it’s the story behind them, as well as how nice they look, that makes them awesome.
- Don’t fiddle. Look, Instagram filters are great and we’re not saying don’t use them, just use them sparingly. If you’ve got a good photo to start with it probably won’t need much editing anyway. As a rule of thumb, we suggest avoiding the set filters themselves (except ‘Valencia’ <3). Instead, up the brightness, accentuate the contrast and add some warmth. You can’t go wrong.
There. You’re officially a photography pro. Okay maybe it takes a few years for that, but you are well on the way. As with anything, practice is the real key so do plenty of picture taking and you’ll discover a style comes quickly. The most important thing is to have fun with it.
So, grab your phone, get snapping and if Oppo makes it onto your Instagram, make sure you tag us in!