How To Take Tasty Food Photos

How To Take Tasty Food Photos

With the advent of social media foodie culture, food photography is everywhere. The market is saturated with top-down smartphone images of cappuccinos, healthy salads, and tasty steaks.

How can a food blogger stand out in this overwhelming parade of food images? By taking high quality, eye catching images, of course!

If you’ve asked people for help before or have done some web searching on the topic, you’ve probably heard these pieces of advice:

1. Use natural light
2. Don’t use flash
3. Use the macro setting on your camera (for food)
And while each of these is, in essence, true, they’re also incomplete and too basic.

That is why D2D Digital reached out to a professional food photographer Oxana Denezhkina and asked her to share 5 food photography secrets exclusively with our readers.

Here are 5 giveaways on how to take tasty photos:


The Power of Right Hand Side

One of the first qualities of a photo that catches and captures a viewer’s eye is the composition. Great composition is something that immediately separates the amateurs from the pros and enthusiasts. How you place various objects in the photographic frame determines the composition and works tremendously toward creating a feeling greater than what the object would convey in the real world.

Many of you do it intuitively, but sometimes beginners make mistakes with arrangement of cups, spoons, forks, and all that has handles. Have you ever thought that for our perception it is very important on which side the handle of the carafe is? If you are right-handed, it must be the on the right side, left-handed opposite. Since there are more people who are right-handers, so it is better to have the handles on the right side. According to my stock-photo selling experience, such photos are sold much better.

Sweet chocolate ice cream with mint

The Rule of Thirds

This is another illustration technique that photographers must master. The Rule of Thirds divides the canvas/film frame with three vertical lines and three horizontal lines. The four intersecting vertices are the key points to remember, as studies have demonstrated that the human eye goes to those points first when looking at a framed object like a painting, sketch, or photograph. Therefore, when you are composing the photograph, placing the key elements at one of those four points enhances the dynamics of your photo.

Our brain reads data from left to right. Therefore, I advise to place the main object in the right side of the frame. Thus the viewer’s eye slides over the image, and stops at he key point of the image.
If you think about it, you’ll notice that the photos with the right semantic load attract more attention.

Fresh sweet tomato and basil on the wooden table

Simple Beauty – Minimalism

The concept of less is more lends itself effectively to just about everything, and photography is no exception. Overly complicated or complex photographic composition has the same problem as compound complicated sentences in writing, which make it difficult for the audience to understand and appreciate the idea that is trying to be conveyed. Simple in this context doesn’t mean simplistic, but rather lacking unnecessary elements that confuse or are redundant. In photography creating uncluttered, but distinct compositions simplify yet enhance the delivery of the idea. The mind’s eye of the viewer can do all the heavy lifting.

Italian antipasto with mortadella of bologna

Use Lighting Style to Create Mood

Keep in mind the psychological meaning of pictures and apply it to your shooting techniques. For example, for breakfast, fruit juices will be good to use high key photography. This way it will be a great illustration of energy and joy. The dinners or junk food can be taken in more low-key.

High-key lighting focuses on light tones and whites; low-key lighting relies on shadows, deep blacks and darker tones, with very few whites and middle tones. The mood is opposite, too – while high-key lighting is hopeful and optimistic, low-key lighting is somber, mysterious and moody, dramatic or even ominous depending on the subject.

Buy a Really Good Lens Not a Camera

Lately I got a lot questions what camera do I use. Well, a few years ago I also thought that a camera takes pictures, not a person. But now I’m sure it’s not true. Would you believe that I still use a simple Nikon D300s?
The thing that you really need is a good lens. The lenses with fixed focal length are considered to give the best pictures that’s why I bought Nikkor 50 mm 1.4 G and Nikkor Micro 105 mm 2,8G that are perfect for foodphotography.

This was a roundup of tips from Oxana Denezhkina on how to take tasty food photos. Oksana was born in St. Petersburg, but already 6 years lives in Italy. She has a wide experience as a food photographer and lately she has started shooting weddings and love story reportages. Her photo studio is located in Sardinia, Italy, but she travels with pleasure for a creative photoshoot.

You can view her photos here or on Instagram

We, at D2D Digital would also give a piece of advice to food bloggers. To take tasty food photos is a hard-earned skill—after all, that’s why some people are lucky enough to get paid for it. But it’s also a lot easier to hone these days, no matter who you are; even a smartphone can yield gorgeous, bright images. What separates magazine-worthy photos from their less impressive counterparts isn’t a fancy camera or expensive equipment. It’s an understanding of what it takes to compose an appealing image and the confidence to execute your vision.

Happy blogging!

Maya Roeland

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