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Old 04-05-2011, 07:17 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by DaveSoMD View Post
It is not the food itself, I believe it is the angle, camera, perspective and lighting of the photos.

You may want to try taking the photos from just off the the horizontal, maybe 45 degrees up or even JUST above, not looking down into the plate. That would give you more depth of field and dimension to the dishes.

Lighting - remember that incandescent light is a warm amber light and florescent light is a cooler blueish light. This will affect the look of your food in the photo. When I take my food photos I use an incandescent over head light and the flash. Also, if take the photo over head and are using over head lighting you won't get a lot of shade and shadow on the plate so there won't be much dimension and again, things will look flat.

What will also help is if you look at other photos of food (cooking magazines, TV, etc). You need to look at them for the things above as well as color as contrast/interest (as was already pointed out).

If you really want to take a lot of photos of your food, get a camera when you can afford one. Trust me it will make all the difference is the world. I'll admit I use a DSLR camera, sometimes with a tripod, but you can find a decent camera for a decent price.
Thanks for the advice. I wish I could get one of those umbrella flash thingy, they can bring shadow to your object, which is not achievable with the camera's own flash. besides that, I also need a camera man so I get to eat the dish before it gets cold lol
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Old 04-05-2011, 07:33 PM   #32
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Thanks for the advice. I wish I could get one of those umbrella flash thingy, they can bring shadow to your object, which is not achievable with the camera's own flash. besides that, I also need a camera man so I get to eat the dish before it gets cold lol
You're welcome. Just some things learned taking my own photos and from my design classes.

I know the feeling. If I know I am going to want to take photos I try to get a place set up and ready and the camera out and set so once I plate the food I'm good to go, like for the challenges. But is seems that a lot of times during the week have been know to go "oh that looks good, now where is the camera..." and I'm eating a cold dinner after everyone else is almost done.
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Old 04-05-2011, 07:40 PM   #33
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the food looks great. i think your phone doesn't take very good pictures. not focused and color is a little weird.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:38 PM   #34
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I know a lot of it has to do with the photos themselves because I can tell your white balance is way off and ISO isn't set right however, the soup does look oily and cloudy; two things that people really don't like with soup. the pizza looks to be all bread. with a crust that thick, they need to be loaded up a little more in order to really have more flavor to them, you also may want to dock the center to keep the bubbles down and keep the middle from rising to much....all in all, you're doing pretty good so keep it up. Cooking is a long tiresome progression but progression is always noticeable in your own cooking.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:43 PM   #35
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I know a lot of it has to do with the photos themselves because I can tell your white balance is way off and ISO isn't set right however, the soup does look oily and cloudy; two things that people really don't like with soup. the pizza looks to be all bread. with a crust that thick, they need to be loaded up a little more in order to really have more flavor to them, you also may want to dock the center to keep the bubbles down and keep the middle from rising to much....all in all, you're doing pretty good so keep it up. Cooking is a long tiresome progression but progression is always noticeable in your own cooking.
in fact, regarding the pizza, that puffed dough with simple topping is the kind of pizza I'm trying to achieve. I love those bubbles, they taste great. the crust is actually very thin, about 1/8 inch.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:50 PM   #36
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in fact, regarding the pizza, that puffed dough with simple topping is the kind of pizza I'm trying to achieve. I love those bubbles, they taste great. the crust is actually very thin, about 1/8 inch.
well then..ok

as said, your stuff could use some work at least from a photo stand point..it's hard to judge someone's cooking simply on a visual point even more so when the photos are of low quality.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:51 PM   #37
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well then..ok

as said, your stuff could use some work at least from a photo stand point..it's hard to judge someone's cooking simply on a visual point even more so when the photos are of low quality.
yea I agree, I'll probably post some of those recipes in the future to discuss
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:17 PM   #38
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I think they look good, hyperion. They have an appealing home comfort style to me. As professional restaurant plates, though, I might offer a general critique (mind you, I have no expertise).

I think a plate should show off its individual components. So, for example...

For the penne dish, I'd like to see some well-defined penne shapes, a better sense of the sauce, more modest unmelted cheese on top.

Or, the spaghetti, I can barely see the noodles. The cherry tomatoes plus capers would really pop in a photo that showed them off. The outside shell of a few clams would look fantastic.

I can't identify a single ingredient in the tilapia soup. Use green cabbage plus dash of vinegar. A bigger chunk of meat to show that it is fish.

And pizza is dough + sauce + topping. I need to see them as discreet layers.

As preparations go, I'm impressed. You have versatility; it's obvious that you're a good cook. If it's presentation you'd like to improve, I would consider more layering, building or architecture. If it's the quality of the photos, well, that's a very different skill set and discussion better posted at a Photo Forum. Oh, and one last thing - lose the big parsley sprigs, please! They look like plastic umbrellas.

I would dig into your plates with gusto! We're glad you've joined DC.
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Old 04-06-2011, 12:31 AM   #39
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andy, josh, and dave nailed it.

all of the dishes look good to me but could look better with improved lighting and white balance.

i've made lots of dishes that were appealing looking to the naked eye but the pictures didn't do them justice so i never posted them. it was almost always due to the lighting and angle.


i like dave's advice of looking at professional food pics and trying to imitate them. i've done that and my food pictures improved dramatically (lol, but still not always good enough to post )

btw, one quick tip i can offer is to add grated cheese seconds before you take the picture so it hasn't melted into the dish. the cheese will look nicer if it's still contrast-y white.

also, when plating spaghetti i'd always noticed mario batali would carefully lift the strands and twist them as he lowered them onto the plate. for some reason pasta just looks better when it's a little more organized. and as patty mentioned, i would have either used fewer clams or arranged them a bit better.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:09 AM   #40
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1. I never use a flash head on. It will flatten your photo! Generally, a flash is used for fill lighting outdoors (ONLY). (Portrait photography is another issue, but food modeling seldom, if ever uses flash.) Adjust all of your lighting beforehand with directional lamps of the proper color temperature, and use your camera settings (aperture/time) to establish your depth of field and to get the desired brightness.

2. ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS use a tripod.

3. Get the photo correct when you shoot it. NEVER depend on post picture software adjustments. Learn to be a photographer, NOT depend on a computer to do the work you should have done at the time you took the photo. Post production software is for MINOR adjustments, or special effects... NOT a crutch for bad decisions.

4. Never stop learning. No one knows it all.
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