Advise to Food Photographers

posted on 9th of september, 2013

I have downloaded 131 images, primarily soups and during my searches for specific soups I have noticed a couple of things that stop me from purchasing certain images.

1. Think before you take the picture as many of the images are not realistic, even if they are very pleasing to the eye. As an example, don't put beef stock in a fine china soup bowl - stock is used as a base to prepare soups, gravies, and stews. Put it in a measuring cup, pot or glass jar.

2. Before you garnish the heck out of a food dish, take a picture before you apply any garnish. That provides me with a base picture to add my own garnishes if I want - it's a pain to remove a couple of dozen small bits of chives to get to the base picture. It costs you nothing to shoot the picture without the garnish. Soups that appear in glasses or cups should be drinkable, if you load it with globs of sour cream or other items that don't flow when you raise it to your mouth you will have soup running down the sides of your mouth.

3. You have spent a great deal of time setting up the plate to be photographed. Take photos from numerous angles and distances.

4. Keywords - I found a picture, by accident, of cattle soup.

I can't believe that anyone would actually search for "cattle soup". The dish contains herbs - tell me what they are, not just the keyword "herbs". Tell me the kind of beans, the kind of meat and by the way the photographers that believe that you can place a whole hot dog, or full lengths of chives on top of a bowl of soup, obviously have never eaten soup! The keywords must match what I can see in the picture - if I can't see the potatoes (unless it's a cream of potato soup) don't tell me there are potatoes in it.

5. If you want to sell food pictures, I would suggest that in most cases, simple is better than complex.

I need thousands of soup pictures - keep on shooting!!

Comments (22)

Posted by Peanutroaster on September 21, 2013
I just up loaded a bunch of soup shots. thanks for the suggestion!
Posted by Freedomsfolio on September 20, 2013
Wow! a blog from a buyer!! It's really interesting!! To all buyers...keep them coming and help us know your requirement better! Thanks for sharing!
Posted by Virgilxxn on September 18, 2013
I do all prep and shoot food, so you insights are very interesting. I find easier to shoot food on white or black slates...Check my portfolio for some unussual textures and ideas :) Kind regards
Posted by Egomezta on September 17, 2013
Great blog, thanks for sharing.
Posted by Reberman on September 16, 2013
I received a response from an editor at DT with respect to taking multiple pictures from different angles with different garnishes, etc. I don't see it as a problem - following is the reply:

"Our policy regarding this topic focuses on duplicates or blatant similarities between images, and countless numbers of pictures on the same subject with no significant differences to offer a really useful variety to our buyers. We encourage taking different approaches to a specific subject, soups in this case, and, as you well pointed, appreciate variety rather than using the exact same angle/lighting/setup with only the content of the bowl being changed.
So, as a brief answer, we are open to variations on the same subject, as long as a series is not overwhelmed with similarity."
Posted by Sean2see on September 12, 2013
Good Blog, Thank you for your advice.
Good luck for sells.
Posted by Reberman on September 12, 2013

I have asked DT for clarification on this issue.

"Take photos from numerous angles and distances."

I think this would be interpreted as too many similar images by DT reviewers.
Posted by Metsafile on September 12, 2013
"Take photos from numerous angles and distances."

I think this would be interpreted as too many similar images by DT reviewers.
Posted by Heathse on September 12, 2013
Thank you! We need more designers to tell us what they need.
Posted by Angelaravaioli on September 12, 2013
But my Moroccan soup not interested? I took the photo in Marrakech before eating the soup, as I have served ... More realistic than this!
Was also very good!
Posted by Alvera on September 11, 2013
Wish more designers be like you.
Posted by Julia161 on September 11, 2013
Very useful remarks, thanks for sharing!
Posted by Tonnywu76 on September 11, 2013
Thanks for the useful advise and input which directly from the buyer yourself.
Posted by Gmargittai on September 10, 2013
I wish we could have more of these type of blogs. Very few customers ever bother to give any feedback. We are literally "shooting in the dark". Thank you for helping.

I have a few pictures selling well, others not so much and I really can't tell the reason. There must be a reason... but it escapes me.
Posted by Laurasinelle on September 10, 2013
Thanks for sharing!!!!
Posted by ecadphoto on September 10, 2013
Excellent blog! I especially liked your information about making it realistic. While shooting hot peppers the other day, I had a really pretty antique fork that I thought about putting in the photo. Then I started thinking, would someone really be eating these with a fork? Maybe, but probably not!

You have reinforced certain things as a designer which is fantastic!!!
Posted by Peanutroaster on September 10, 2013
Also if you could add a few images that you've purchase to this blog so we can see examples of excellent shots. Thanks!
Posted by Peanutroaster on September 10, 2013
Excellent! Thanks for sharing. Its always great to hear from image buyers so we can provide images that are needed. Any specific soups you need?
Posted by Szebas on September 10, 2013
No soup in my port either, I usually skip that from my menu, but if I'd have any and a client would like something edited out of the image/images he or she bought from me I'd jump right in to edit them for free, easy peasy I ain't that greedy :)
Posted by Qin0377 on September 10, 2013
Thank you! Your suggestions are important to me! Good Luck!
Posted by Lenutaidi on September 09, 2013
I have not soup in my portfolio. After this blog, I think I get to make soups:)Thank you for advice!Thank you for sharing!
Posted by Rigsby8131 on September 09, 2013
Great blog. Thanks for the advice!!!

Comments (22)

This article has been read 1054 times. 6 readers have found this article useful.
Photo credits: Twilightartpictures.

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