Recently I was asked by Durham County to lead a couple of workshops at their Food & Drink Exchange Conference. The idea was to try to get owners, particularly food providers such as pubs, bistros, small hotels, etc., to improve the photographs they use. Often when providers were asked for images of what they were offering they were not really up to the kind of standard the county wanted. To that end I tried to show them how to use smartphones, tablets and simple cameras to capture images that were an improvement on what they had been taking thus far.
We explored the use of lighting and styling, and something of the pros and cons of using different devices. In the lighting I showed them how to use available window light and simple reflectors to improve the overall lighting and feel to an image. In styling, as well as the obvious related to setting out a dish and ensuring it looks appetising, I suggested how they could use different surfaces and materials to present their offerings on and some of the incidentals they might use. One of things discussed was also how to think about what to put in and what to leave out – the latter often being the hardest. We also talked about looking for a balance in an image. A balance of position and colour.
It was pointed out that once the requirement was stepped up to wanting to provide leaflets, menus, banners, etc., they should really seek out a professional photographer to provide this for them.
One of the places my wife and I (and some of our friends visit) have a blog site which has a lot of images posted and quite frankly, if I was thinking of going purely on what I saw on the blog – I wouldn’t go and I’ve had friends comment about this. So, as part of the service we can offer, we can help to review a website, or blog for image content and help owners to improve what they show to the public. If you feel you might be in this position, then get in touch and let us help you review your images.