Every year, millions and millions of dollars are spent on food photography. For good reason. Because ‘we eat with our eyes’, strong, clean, attractive images of food are essential in the sales process. And food images in menus are extremely popular with diners.
However, quality food photography does not have to be expensive. At snapWerx we provide great food images, both meals and individual items, at very competitive prices.
How do we do it? Time is money. . . . we spend less time so the client spends less money.
Simple, consistent background: The first thing that is obvious is that our food images are typically very simple. We use a white background, the same background on every shot. This allows us to take many more shots than the typical food photography session would yield.
No elaborate styling: We depend on the client to present the dish or item as they wish it to appear in the photograph. We emphasize also that the presentation must be clean; free of extraneous crumbs, smears, spillage, etc. Yes, we all appreciate food photography that is beautifully staged and styled, but this takes time and time is money. We will do some cleanup as we go along if necessary but, again, this takes time.
Flash (strobe) lighting: Continuous lighting commonly used in food photography can create some very nice images, however it also has several drawbacks. One drawback is that it is hot. This tends to dry out the food very quickly. This would not be as much of a factor if not for the other drawback. It is simply not as bright as flash, therefore a tripod is required for the longer exposures necessary. This results in more time required per food item as the tripod and camera are repositioned for each shot. And during that time, the food is ‘baking’ under the lights. Our technique is to use two strobes positioned inside or outside (depending upon the subject matter) a two or three foot light cube and do all shots hand-held, saving a great deal of time. We will typically do long shots, close-up shots and several different angles.
Elaborate staged and styled food photography certainly has it’s place. Our technique is not for everyone. But for restaurants and food retailers who are looking for value and quality, we offer a very cost-effective two hour food photography package, menuPak, for $299, including all usable images. Using our efficient photography techniques, a menuPak session will typically yield several different images of dozens of individual food items or 1-2 dozen meals.