Archive For The “Portfolio Updates” Category
The king of crustaceans, the lobster ready for the table.
Tips for making great food photos
It’s all about the light! My best tip for beginners is to be aware of the intensity of light and how it affects the food, and learn to adjust accordingly. Here are some tips to get started.
Take photos under natural light. Do not use overhead lighting or lamps or your built-in flash. Ever!
Walk around to find the best light source. Do not feel limited to taking pictures in your kitchen. Perhaps the light in the morning is the best in your bedroom and in the afternoon in your living room.
Try to take photos from different angles. Some dishes look better from above (like pizza) or from the side (burgers), or in a 45 degree angle (drinks). Try to move around the board and take photos at different angles so that you can choose your favorite later.
Minimize rubbish. If that spoon, napkin or busy background does not contribute to the photo, this will be detrimental to the photo. Focus on what is most important, but do not zoom in so close that viewers can not say what the food is.
Solve problems with general food photography
Are you frustrated about how your food photographs will look like? Read on for possible solutions.
Your photos are blurry. Blurry photos are caused by camera shake. Solutions are:
1) keep your camera stable (easier said than done),
2) use a tripod with a remote control so that your camera stays completely still while you’re shooting,
3) use a faster shutter speed, for which you have your aperture and / or move to an area with more light, or
4) increase your ISO to reduce the amount of light needed (this will reduce the image quality, however).
Your colors are not lifelike. When you edit your photos and your plate looks very blue, yellow, pink or green, use the white balance tools of your software to fix it! Colors come to life when the white balance is set correctly. When shooting in RAW format, you can adjust the color balance more easily later.
Your photos just do not “pop” like professional food photographs. Experienced food photographers use lenses that allow them to reduce their depth of field to mark the subject of the photo. They then use photo software to tweak the contrast, the levels and the sharpness of their photos. Sometimes a few minor edits can actually take a picture.
Read on for relatively inexpensive recommendations for lenses and software that can help you solve these problems and create great photos of foods.
Please view my updated Showcase page. Some photos are from the pre-digital era.
Camera manufacturers are fond of advertising cameras by the number of megapixels they have. But what exactly is a megapixel and how does it affect photos?
A megapixel is 1 million pixels. Pixels are small squares that are put together like pieces of a puzzle or mosaic to create your photographs. The resolution of your image will be determined in large part by how many of these tiny squares are packed together in a small space.
An 8 megapixel camera (8MP) would have roughly eight million tiny squares of information per inch while a camera phone at 1.5 megapixels (1.5MP) would only have one and a half millions squares of information in an inch.
So what does that mean for your photos?
Simply put, the more information the better. The more information squeezed into an area, the better our eyes blend the edges together to create a complete image. If too little information is available the eye will notice the jagged edges of the pixels where they meet, just as you see the individual squares of mosaic tile designs. The accepted “standard” for printing images is currently 300dpi (dots per inch). While dots per inch aren’t technically the same as pixels per inch the difference won’t affect you in your day to day photo taking/printing.
How much information do I need?
To figure out how much information you need for a specific print size all you need do is multiply the print size by the resolution desired.
For example, with the 300dpi rule in mind, to print an 8×10 photo you would need 2400 pixels by 3000 pixels of information. If you were displaying an image on the internet (where 72 pixels per inch is acceptable) you would only need 576 pixels by 720 pixels.
So how many megapixels do I need?
Each camera displays data in slightly different ratios but there are some “rules of thumb” you can follow.
Decide what the largest size image you will want to print. For most people this will be an 8×10 image. Determine the number of pixels needed for a 300dpi print (2400×3000 for an 8×10). Next multiply the two pixel dimensions together. For an 8×10 this comes out to 7.2 million pixels, or 7.2 megapixels. This is the preferred number of MP you need if an 8×10 print is the largest you are likely to print.
Chart of common prints and preferred MP