The world’s most delicious cheeseburger has just appeared before you and you can’t resist snapping a picture. But all too often, pictures of food never come out the way you’d like them to.
Whether it’s the lighting or the angle in which you’re holding the camera, there are a few things to keep in mind at home or at a restaurant that enhance the outcome of food pictures.
“Smartphone photos of food are often taken in dimly lit restaurants and sometimes, plates have already been partially devoured,” a spokesperson for photo service Dreamstime said. “Photos should be taken with the viewer in mind — these are the ones that will be most appealing to look at.”
Want to share a snapshot of the salad you just made with your Facebook friends? Use a white plate. Does your homemade chili not look impressive in that picture? Add a pop of color with cheese.
Mashable spoke with Dreamstime about how to take better mouth-watering shots that will make friends jealous of each meal.
When shopping in a grocery store, find the best-looking ingredients that look plump, healthy and vibrant. The more appetizing the ingredients, the more enticing your photo will be. Plates that contain colored vegetables and/or meat, preferably in light-colored sauces, are often the most appealing to the eye in photos.
Think of a focus point where you want to draw the attention. This is especially challenging for foods such as stews, soups and chili — unless you add in something that is attractive in color and shape. A few leaves of herbs, slices of chili pepper, carrot, cheese or a spoonful of cream can add life to visibly boring dishes.
You can also incorporate a human presence by including knives, spoons or napkins. These elements add interest to the shot composition and imply that the dish will soon be enjoyed.
The Right Light
As with any type of photography, a good source of light is key. When one or more cooler sources of light are available instead of natural or flash light, move the plate — if the source of light is fixed and coming from above, perpendicularly — until you find a spot that will present the dish best.
Picking the Plate
The plate adds significant depth-of-field to food pictures. For meals already rich in color such as salads, go with a white dish. But some food also looks great against a blue or yellow background, according to Dreamstime. For more traditional meals, select plates that look more rustic. And if a dish doesn’t have too many colors, avoid using a brightly-colored pot — you want the food to be the main focus, not the background.
The Perfect Angle
This may sound obvious, but choose the best-looking part of the dish. “Select a good angle in order to show the size, the form and the ingredients,” Dreamstime said. “Photograph from above (perpendicular) when you want to show texture or from above at different degrees when you want to show the forms and details.”
What are some of your tips for taking food photos? Let us know in the comments below.