Over the past year in addition to my other assignments, I shot a cookbook for the ABC TV show The Chew. Some of the other things I have been doing outside of my studio, as many of you know, is teaching food photography workshops and speaking at blogger conferences about food photography. On top of that the Outtakes column on The New York Times Diner’s Journal has given me the opportunity to share what I know with a broader audience still. Well, I am getting yet another wonderful opportunity to do more of the same.
The Chew has invited me to be part of a segment on “Taking Better Blog Pictures” and it will run Wednesday May 22nd at 1pm ET. It will also be available on the web later that week. I hope you will be able to check it out.
Here is a selection of some of the fun things I have been working on lately. The first shot is from Eating Well, a feature on Thai food that appears in this month’s issue. The next is a shot of maple syrup with a makeup brush from New You Magazine. It was a feature on Foods for Beauty. The third is a pasta machine for the product pages in La Cucina Italiana. Also, if you have been following me on Twitter you have seen that I have been writing the Outtakes column on food photography for the New York Times Diner’s Journal for the past few months. Please jump over there and have a look.
I was going to run this for my new Outtakes column on Diner’s Journal but I was a little late. Glad to be able to share it here.
With a subject as simple and somewhat monochromatic as this Turnip Slaw by Melissa Clark , published earlier this month, it helped to take an all or nothing approach. White on white on white may seem like it has little to offer on the surface but when you begin to see the subtle variations in color, light quality and tone it can make for a beautiful study. The image that ran with the story is a more traditional approach to food photography where this effort is more of an indulgence. I am inspired by the cover paintings of Cook’s Illustrated and seek to make my own art in that vein whenever possible.
By adding the bold architecture of the bottle and grinder and to the image and by keeping the depth of field very shallow the image took on an ethereal quality that I found very appealing. Also, the fold in the napkin gives the overall composition a lived in look, less fussy and formal. The distance from the viewer is intentional, meant to give the illusion of having to stand back and look at the spaces around the shapes. It did not surprise me that this was not the image that ran with the story because this is more about form and shape rather than food but making pictures like this is an exercise in being versatile and following your influences as an artist.
I was sent to Pichet Ong’s new Qi in Times Square to cover their opening today and broke out 3 different cameras to experiment a bit…I included some funky iPhone Hipstamatic shots (John S lens and Blanko Film) in my selects. I submitted images from all three cameras (my Canon 5d M2, a Lumix GF1 and the iPhone) and much to my pleasure and surprise these Hispsta prints made the cut. Here are the shot that ran. Go check out this space if you are in the area…it’s pretty cool…and bring your iPhone.
Today on Diner’s Journal I discuss the trials and tribulations, triumphs and disasters involved in trying to execute a stop action pour shot. Join me over at my other blogging home for some tips.
You asked for it and here it is…a brief overview of how to get some of those sultry, mysterious steam, smoke and flame shots. Come over and visit NYT Diner’s Journal today for the rundown.
I’m back on the DJ today to help you set up that table shot at your holiday dinner. Check it.
I have a new DJ post on how not to offend your family while taking their picture at Thanksgiving and I will be doing an interview on the Learn Food Photography website on November 30th. Please come on by and give a listen.
In an earlier life I was a school teacher. My love of teaching was ultimately trumped by my yearn to be a free-spirited self-employed artist…which of course pays better. Classroom or not teaching always seems to find me…personal trainer…baseball coach…and now internet food photography guru.
Recently, I have been hearing from many of the readers of my Diner’s Journal posts offering tips on improving your food photography. Some of you have even provided examples of the way your photography has been improving since you have been following the posts. The results have been impressive.
As a teacher of young people you can only hope that you will be around long enough for your students to come back to tell you how much they appreciated your guidance and that even though you put them in detention for chewing gum, they still liked you. As a teacher of fully formed adults you actually get almost immediate gratification. Today, I received an email from Amy, who has been following the posts on the New York Times website. She thanked me for my advice, credited me with truly helping her rescue her photo shoot and actually wrote an article about it and dedicated it to me. Now that is exceedingly cool.
There was also “Pazzaglia” hailing from Rome, Italy who posted the following comment on my last DJ post about shooting ugly food:
Here are a few of my before and afters. Before Andrew on the left, after Andrew’s advice and reading some articles on Food Bloggers Unite:
Same camera, same photographer, better advice! I’m not there yet, but I am learning and absorbing all of your information! A gigantic THANKS!
There have also been so many wonderful comments on both mSS… and on DJ thanking me and complimenting me for the posts and on my photography. I deeply appreciate all the love that has been coming my way. Teachers teach…no matter what venue we end up in…but ultimately without interested, grateful students who learn and work hard to employ what you are trying to teach them…the energy is wasted. My efforts have been so worth it and you all have made this old teacher very happy that the knowledge I’m dropping is not falling on deaf ears. So, to all of you…A Big Thank You.
PHOTO CREDIT: Fractured Amy
Come over to the DJ and participate in our discussion on whether or not cookbooks need to have photos to capture your attention. Our friend Melissa Clark tossed out the question on Twitter and we are running with it.