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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 23 Oct 2013 (Wednesday) 03:53
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Food Photography and strobes

 
crumbleton
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Oct 23, 2013 03:53 |  #1

I'm not a pro photographer, just an enthusiastic amateur :-)

A restaurant local to me keeps putting up pics on their website and Twitter/Facebook feeds of their dishes and premises. While they do indeed have great food and location they insist on taking these pictures with an iphone or similar.

I'm considering contacting them and asking if they'd be interested in me taking some nice pics in a controlled setting for their use. I wouldn't charge them as I think it would be good practice for me and plus I'm not even sure I'd want to be a pro photographer. But hey i might get a free meal or two out of it :-)

My question is; a lot of food shoots are done using continuous lighting and several tutorials seem to favour this method of lighting.

Are there any particular things to watch out for if I were to use strobes instead? What are the drawbacks or is it just personal preference?


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RichSoansPhotos
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Oct 23, 2013 04:10 |  #2
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Wouldn't charge them as it would be "good practice"? You'll probably end up like the some of us, giving away something for nowt for the rest of their photography life with nothing coming out of it

There is this good tip to 1) shoot with natural light and 2) to photograph it when it's hot




  
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Hyper_Vistas
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Oct 23, 2013 05:27 |  #3

I agree with the OP, why not do it for free? Approaching a company with very little relevant work and asking for money, just isn't going to happen. However, doing it in exchange for experience is priceless.

To answer your question about continuous vs strobes, I would set up some food at home with some off camera flash gear. See if you can get some good results with that, if not, play around with some cont lights.




  
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Foodguy
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Oct 23, 2013 06:54 as a reply to  @ Hyper_Vistas's post |  #4

Could be a great opportunity to see if both you and they like the results.

There are as many ways to shoot and light food as there are types of food. I typically use studio strobes but spent the first few years of my career shooting with hot lights. I don't think that it has as much to do with the type of light as much as what you do with it...and that applies to available light as well.

As has been suggested, play around a little at home, build a small portfolio and approach the restaurant with some samples.

Nothing ventured...nothing gained.;)


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Tc202
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Oct 23, 2013 07:18 |  #5

Why don't you ask for a meal for you and someone else. Now they get pictures and you get food. I would look at fstoppers previous articles about food photography. Good luck!


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RichSoansPhotos
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Oct 23, 2013 07:21 |  #6
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Hyper_Vistas wrote in post #16392149 (external link)
I agree with the OP, why not do it for free? Approaching a company with very little relevant work and asking for money, just isn't going to happen. However, doing it in exchange for experience is priceless.

To answer your question about continuous vs strobes, I would set up some food at home with some off camera flash gear. See if you can get some good results with that, if not, play around with some cont lights.

OK, but at least ask for some favour, like promoting the OP's photography

Tc202 wrote in post #16392285 (external link)
Why don't you ask for a meal for you and someone else. Now they get pictures and you get food. I would look at fstoppers previous articles about food photography. Good luck!


lol, like your style, good idea




  
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OhLook
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Oct 23, 2013 10:40 |  #7

Tc202 wrote in post #16392285 (external link)
Why don't you ask for a meal for you and someone else. Now they get pictures and you get food.

I wouldn't start out by asking them for something free. Maybe this is just me, but if you're considering a business deal, it feels more appropriate to begin by having something to exchange and then making an offer. Buy a meal there in the usual way. Get a table by the window, in daylight. Order dishes that don't wilt fast. Take pictures at the table. Those are your samples.


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xchangx
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Oct 23, 2013 11:02 |  #8

OhLook wrote in post #16392774 (external link)
I wouldn't start out by asking them for something free. Maybe this is just me, but if you're considering a business deal, it feels more appropriate to begin by having something to exchange and then making an offer. Buy a meal there in the usual way. Get a table by the window, in daylight. Order dishes that don't wilt fast. Take pictures at the table. Those are your samples.

Let's be real here... Food prepared for photos will be different than food given to a consumer. The chef/restaurant will want the food to be perfect for photos. Plus hauling in strobes to the table for dinner? :)

He wouldn't be asking them for something free. It's a barter, tell them you'll take the photos for a meal. Then do it professionally with strobes or hot lights.


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Curtis ­ N
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Oct 23, 2013 11:31 |  #9

Good luck with this project - could be fun!
Post some shots when you're done, so Foodguy can rip them to... I mean provide a gentle critique that will benefit all of us.

Good luck!


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OhLook
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Oct 23, 2013 11:37 |  #10

xchangx wrote in post #16392850 (external link)
Let's be real here... Food prepared for photos will be different than food given to a consumer. The chef/restaurant will want the food to be perfect for photos. Plus hauling in strobes to the table for dinner? :)

By the OP's account, the restaurant's current photos would be easy to improve on. This food thread has many excellent photos of restaurant food taken with available light. Check out some recent entries and see whether you still think my proposal was impractical.


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Foodguy
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Oct 23, 2013 14:21 |  #11

Curtis N wrote in post #16392941 (external link)
Post some shots when you're done, so Foodguy can rip them to... I mean provide a gentle critique that will benefit all of us.

I've only ever been gentile in my critiques!

But I agree, post some results and maybe there's a tip or 2 that can be passes along.


My answer for most photography questions: "it depends...'

  
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Food Photography and strobes
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