Step BY Step / How to cook up a storm with your Nikon


1 Move to­wards the light

It’s best to po­si­tion the food side-on to a win­dow – ideally one that is north-fac­ing, or that sim­ply doesn’t have di­rect sun­light shin­ing through. This forms a large, in­di­rect light source that is nat­u­rally dif­fuse, and so will in­tro­duce soft, wrap­ping shad­ows.

2 Set the scene

The en­vi­ron­ment that your fes­tive munchies are placed in is al­most as im­por­tant as the food it­self. Nat­u­ral tex­tures, such as wood, make for at­trac­tive sur­faces, while fairy lights and fir trees in the back­ground re­ally help add to the Christ­massy feel.

3 Style the food

Sub­jects tend to look bet­ter as clus­ters of odd num­bers. Ar­range the food with the most at­trac­tive side to­wards the cam­era, and spread sea­sonal items, such as pine cones, through the scene. As well as a three-quar­ters view, try shoot­ing from above in a ‘flat-lay’ style.

4 Aper­ture Pri­or­ity mode

Set a wide aper­ture be­tween f/2.8 and f/5.6, and fo­cus on the clos­est part of the food, so that the rest of it drops grad­u­ally out of fo­cus while the back­ground is re­duced to an in­dis­tinct blur. Be sure to set the ISO for a fast enough shut­ter speed to avoid cam­era shake.

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