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Your mis­sion this month is to send us your finest ex­am­ples of food pho­tog­ra­phy. You can in­ter­pret this brief how­ever you want, so don’t worry if you aren’t a Miche­lin­starred chef, or don’t live near one.

Great food pho­tog­ra­phy isn’t just about cap­tur­ing mouth-wa­ter­ing shots of an elab­o­rate ban­quet: it can en­com­pass many dif­fer­ent types of food im­agery, in­clud­ing fast food and the in­creas­ingly fash­ion­able street food. Then there is food and restau­rant cul­ture, how food is pre­pared and served, the peo­ple who pro­duce food and so on. Re­ally, there are as many dif­fer­ent types of food pho­tog­ra­phy as there are cuisines.

That said, as with all pho­tog­ra­phy, it helps if you have some kind of con­nec­tion with your sub­ject. Maybe you are friends with the chef or farmer, love the restau­rant or love that par­tic­u­lar type of street food.

Many of the prin­ci­ples of por­trait pho­tog­ra­phy ap­ply to food. You need to get close enough to the sub­ject, and care­fully set the fo­cus where you want it to be. Shoot­ing with wide aper­tures helps, as it helps blur out dis­tract­ing back­grounds and comes in use­ful in the low light of a restau­rant.

Get started to­day

* It’s fine to use flash, but make sure the light is not over­pow­er­ing or un­nat­u­ral. Off-cam­era flash and stu­dio lights make food look great. * There are var­i­ous ways to make food look ap­petis­ing; cook­ing it will help, as the steam can make it look tastier. Squirt a lit­tle wa­ter on fruit or vegetables to make them look fresher.

A clas­sic still life im­age that draws from the tra­di­tions and prin­ci­ples of great paint­ing. This im­age com­bines fan­tas­tic light­ing with fresh, ap­peal­ing in­gre­di­ents to tran­scend the bound­aries of food pho­tog­ra­phy. Even veg­e­tar­i­ans would have to agree! Caro­line Martin

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