When it comes to pictures, everybody loves a good one. Obvious, right? As a professional restaurant, your menu, social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest) and website should feature mouth watering food pictures.
Please raise your hand if you just want to:
- buy pictures from a stock website
- take simple ones with your compact camera or with your phone
In this day and age you should avoid these thoughts and we will help you better understand why. We’ll walk you through all the steps in order to create spectacular photos and when we’re done yours will be so good that they can compete with those found in glossy magazines.
Let’s make one thing clear, a lot of the meals found in magazines and on stock websites cannot be enjoyed. Some ingredients are changed to make the meal look better and last longer for a photo shoot.
If you don’t want to use the talent of a professional and you trust your abilities with a DSLR camera (a little bit more professional) or even with your smart phone (you didn’t buy a phone with a 5MP camera for nothing, are we right?), then you should learn how to take better pictures.
Ready? Focus! Snapshot!
Tip & Tricks How to Take Better Food Pictures
- Whether you are using your smart phone or a high-end camera, think about the composition and the light, these are two of the most important things:
- composition – keep it simple, don’t take pictures of food with other colorful distractions in the background
- light – take advantage of natural one, the artificial one is tougher and it leaves a lot of unwanted shadows (whatever light you go for make sure it is pointing directly at the food)
- Try shooting from different angles and if you don’t like what you’ve done, remember mobile phone applications offer a variety of photo effects. If you are using a photo camera you can apply these effects for free online or in Photoshop.
- Going back to the light, try to avoid the flash. If you want to promote a romantic meal, go for candle light instead. If you must use flash, point it at the ceiling and then the light will reflect on the food or create a cone out of paper and put it around you flash.
- Avoid taking photos above the food; try a tilt angle instead, centered on the food from one side, close-up or even diagonal.
A lot of these things will be hard to do in the beginning, but you will get accustomed to it in the end. Great photos are important for a restaurant. These have the power to reflect its vibe (bad pictures makes your restaurant seem “old”, there, we said it) and even its personality.
Wouldn’t you rather go to a restaurant or order from one when its pictures say “more than a 1000 words”? In this world, people do “eat with their eyes” and real photos are important because everybody can understand them, especially foreigners.
Photo credit: morguefile