Feb 20, 2012

Will Work For Food

Sure, I'll take some casual photos of the dishes at your restaurant in trade for a dinner for two.  Especially if the food is as good as it is at Tavern restaurant in Garrison, New York.  It's gonna be a low tech affair, just me and an entry level SLR.  No artificial light, no fills, no frills.  All I need is a relatively bright day and a spot close to a window.  And photoshop.  There are a few tweaks I almost always make to food photos.  I try to adjust the color so that the table ware is close to white, erring on the warm side of the spectrum.  A yellow tinted food pic is more delicious looking than one that's too blue.  I always mess with the levels, because I tend to prefer the Martha-esque "light & bright" style over darker images.  And I usually adjust the shadow areas in photoshop.  If I were a more professional photographer, I'd use a fill light or a reflector during the shoot, but that gets complicated.  I need both hands to hold my camera (I don't use a tripod) so I'd have to set up more equipment to hold the reflector.  I hate gear, and I have no desire to be a professional photographer, so I keep it really simple.  But back to how I process photos.  There are basically three things I do to my photos:  adjust the color cast, adjust the brightness, and lighten the shadowed areas.  Occasionally I will use the clone stamp tool to remove an errant crumb or bit of lint.  As a visual thinker, composition is one thing that comes naturally to me, so I rarely crop photos.  I do sometimes think about stepping up my game, getting a better camera or lenses or a light box set up so I can take photos on par with some of my favorite food blogs, but the thought of more technology and more gear to deal makes me feel sort of…tired.  You know what I'd rather have than more gear?  Ducks.
Follow the link below to see more photos of Chef Jason Woods' beautiful dishes at Tavern restaurant.

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