How to Be Really Good at Food Porn

How to Be Really Good at Food Porn

Always wanted to create your own food porn, especially during this holiday season? You can start by getting a good camera first. However, using top-notch equipment to take those photos aren’t a guarantee that those shots will turn out A-OK. Hence, here are 6 steps to help you snap irresistible pictures, whether you’re using a DSLR or your smartphone’s camera:

  1. Let there be light. Lighting is the most crucial factor in taking a good picture of anything—too much of it will leave your photo overexposed, while too little and it’ll end up too dark. Hence, for best results, stick to using daylight or natural light.

    Enjoying a #dirtyicecream ??| Quezon City - U.P. Campus | #manila #itsmorefuninthephilippines

    A photo posted by Kyvin Sun ☀️ (@kyvs) on



    Cheat just after workout.✌?#dirtyicecream

    A photo posted by Princess Rivera Mercado (@cessymercado) on


    Problems with natural lighting? Then just tweak the white balance setting on your camera, which makes white elements brighter. Or try moving your food to somewhere else (if you’re eating at home). Avoid using your camera’s flash, as the light it provides can be too harsh.

  2. Presentation matters. Even the most ordinary of dishes can look superb when served on good dinnerware or topped with some garnish. Just take a look at this photo. It’s simply tocino and fried rice, but it’s served on a classic white ceramic plate with a metal spoon and fork pair. That alone conveys an air of class, compared to the same tocilog served on a plastic or paper plate. The parsley on top is a great finishing touch.

  1. Find the right angle. Putting food, your subject, in the center of your photo is a good first step. Shooting from above—more commonly known as a bird’s eye view—is a great angle to start with; though you have to be wary of casting a shadow on the food.

    That said, feel free to experiment with different angles or views once in a while. Take this picture for example.

    Bangus, okra at tortang sardinas with cheese ??

    A photo posted by Carina Castillo (@carinacastle) on


    It would be challenging to get these two dishes fit in the frame side-by-side, not to mention that the deep dark brown of the bangus may dominate the picture. However, by slightly placing them off-center, the photographer managed to strike a balance between the two dishes.

    You can also try extreme close-ups from above:

     

    Or at eye level:

     

  1. Make color pop from your photo. Dull colors won’t make food look appetizing at all. Try juxtaposing food against a contrasting background, such as the picture below:

    Pangtanggal ng lumbay. Not-so-instant yakisoba with bacon.

    A photo posted by RA Rivera (@rarivera9) on


  1. Keep things in focus to avoid taking blurry shots. You can activate the autofocus function on most smartphone cameras by just pressing the part where you want it to focus. And of course, keep your hands steady while taking a photo. If a tripod is unavailable, prop your elbow on the table or rest your arm against a wall to minimize shaking.

  2. Add context or action. Taking photos of impeccably-plated food, laid out on an immaculate white sheet, can get boring after a while. So shake it up after a while! Try taking pictures of food in the place where it’s being made or while it’s being prepared.

    One example is below. Would you have guessed that these buns were made and sold at a dingy back-alley in Malaysia’s Chinatown?

     

    More buns! Beside Petaling Street Art House/Coffee Amo. RM 1.50

    A photo posted by Clara Buenconsejo (@alquanna) on



    Or this shot, from something closer to home—the making of xiao long bao in Binondo.

     



    Dump some Dumplings! #binondo #manila #foodtrip #dumplings

    A photo posted by @kencbk on



    WIP: Xiao long bao ?

    A photo posted by Ria Landingin (@rialandingin) on



    And of course, all that food should be consumed. Happy eating!

    Dim sum for my tum-tum. ? #Dimsum #Binondo #Chinese

    A photo posted by Red Sablay (@thepinoytongue) on

     


Clara Buenconsejo
Clara Buenconsejo

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