How to take good photos?

If you want word to spread about your cooking then a high-quality photo of your cuisine is essential! Here are a few tips for producing stunning culinary images.

1. Before the Shoot

Before you begin, consider a style or theme for your dishes and how a visual theme might benefit them. What do you want to say to your guests through your food? What kind of memories do you wish to leave? The answer to these questions will form the core identity of your brand. If you’re not sure, ask your friends for their impressions! After hearing some responses, you’ll begin to conceive a picture. Remember that a confident brand spirit leaves a deeper impression in the mind of the potential customer.

2. Camera Requirements

You don’t necessarily need a high-end camera to shoot a great photo, but there are certain requirements. For rich colors and resolution, we recommend using an APS-C class monocular model or better.

3. Lighting Requirements

Forget using a professional flash. The use of natural lighting in food photography is another powerful element, amplifying the natural appeal of food. A high-quality light field can be produced by simply placing your dish near a window. With the use of a reflector, you can create smooth balanced lighting, back-lighting or dark side fill in both direct or indirect sunlight.

Shooting Tips/

Effect Types/

4. Shooting Angles

The following are the commonly used angles for shooting:

  • Eye Shot
    45 degree shooting. From an angle and slightly offset, simulating the actual position of a customer and food. It’s easy to increase desire through a closer proximity to your culinary delights!
  • Bird’s Eye View
    Shot from directly above, the table becomes the canvas and the dishes… your art!
  • Side Angle
    Suitable for shooting hamburgers, sandwiches and layered foods with focus added to the vertical composition of the dish.
  • Close Ups
    Using a macro lens is a great way to bring focus to the ingredients and the way they interact with the dish.

5. Theme

Let your photo tell a story. Consider the following:

  • Furnishings
    Small things like the choice of tablecloth, the ingredients in the dish, the style of wine glass,  cutlery, crockery or even candles… can all add up to create a unique culinary presence. Another powerful element that can enhance a theme is the staging your dish against an exotic background such as a beach, a park or the city lights. The limit is your imagination!
  • Action
    Another element which creates a powerful association is the addition of a hand in your photo. Whether it be holding pasta on a fork or cutting into a steak, this device adds an immediacy to enjoyment of your dish.
  • Dynamic Food
    Another effect which brings food to life is the addition of moving elements. Try capturing steam rising off a hot bowl of soup, cinnamon being sprinkled over a latte or chocolate sauce being poured over ice cream. Representing the final touches to your masterpiece, this effect can only elevate your customers anticipation!

6. Chef Portraits

A good photographer can capture the personality of a chef in ways that best suit the moment. Whether it be shots of them at action in the kitchen, posed relaxed and natural or by revealing unique personal characteristics.

7. Use of Space

Try using horizontal and vertical composition. If you want to exhibit the subject in a fuller space, the use of a wide-angle lens is highly recommended. Also, the careful placement of appropriate items in the background of your shot can build atmosphere in the space.

8. Other Considerations

Try to shoot the food as soon as it has been prepared. If the shot is taking a while, monitor the state of the food for consistency. eg. if a meat surface becomes dry, use a small brush to apply a very light layer of oil. Alternatively, a salad could use a light spray of water to give it a fresher look.

When taking a high quality photo, always take care to remember the last, most important step – paying attention to resolution! Regardless of whether it’s DearChef or another site, follow the site specifications when uploading photos to ensure the perfect presentation of both your cuisine and images.

The above photos were provided by DearChef  and cheng cheng.

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