If you are a regular to this blog, you probably can tell that majority of my photo subjects are food-oriented. I think that this topic has particularly sustained my interest in blogging. While I am no expert in taking food photos, I am happy whenever my snapshots succeed in making any reader mouthwatered and hungry (*grins*). At times, my own posts make me crazy-hungry. Unarmed with technical know-how, I only had one rule whenever I capture food photos whatever camera I do use: to capture it the way I want to remember it. Until I’ve joined in the food photography workshop conducted by Jay Alonzo last weekend.
(Jay Alonzo, the same teacher we had for the basic photography workshop the other weekend, as he checked the lights).
When our maestro announced that we will be taking photos of a salad, fish, dessert and cocktail, I thought that I can snap everything in few minutes. That is how shallow is the newbie in me. When we were grouped into three (with an average of 6 members) and asked to discuss the paraphernalia (including the camera accessories) which can be of use for the actual shoot, I fancied the idea of food styling and feared the lighting technicalities since I had zero experience about studio lights set-up.
On the actual shoot, we were asked to photograph the dishes the way we want to compose it. That is, keeping in mind what has been shared during the lecture + on the day reminders. While the chef was busy taking care of the food’s palatability, each group was doing the table and lights set up. It absolutely amazed me how the lights (and shadows) made a big difference on the photo’s appeal. For a newbie, the technicalities can be a little overwhelming and being with professionals can also be very intimidating. I opine that it is our interest and passion to improve which shall sustain us.
(I had to add a couple of uncut tomato cherries in order to improve my subject, i.e. top cherry with the leaf. Also, we interchanged some of the quail eggs to position the one with the nicest yoke near the subject. )
(I have 10 shots of the grilled salmon. I submitted this one because I liked that I can taste the sauce and feel the thickness of the salmon visually. The overall appeal will be different if you capture the entire plate from the top.)
(We have adjusted the lights to make it pinkish to avoid the flatness of the background, which was actually white. The donut-like earrings near the cup are some of the gifts from my online exchange gift partner last December.)
(This was taken 20 minutes after the preceding photo was captured. Since the strawberry already looked dry, we had put on olive oil by using a paint brush. I liked how the cake looked so expensive. In reality, it is one of those readily available slices of cake from Lulu Center which are not pricey.)
Overall, I never thought that it would take time to compose a photo — considering all the set ups required. But I am more than pleased with the results that we were able to capture the taste without the post-processing. After the submission from each attendee, we were adjudged as the best group and the best photo came from a groupmate which had a better version of my grilled salmon submission. (He was able to include the candle in his framing.)
Some of you might want to ask about how delicious the food were. I honestly had no idea because I did not taste any. I keep in mind what our lecturer shared that not to eat anything that we have not seen that he ate. Since the food being used for photoshoots are for the visual pleasure and some of the ingredients are being modified. On a larger note, mind the touches and re-touching alike done on the food as it becomes gloomy.
It was a day of hardwork and fun. I absolutely enjoyed and learned from it.