noraleah:

From Food Porn To Food Mourn: The 101 Saddest Photos On Instagram

Alexis sent me this link awhile ago and it’s too great not to share. Just because you can photograph your food, doesn’t mean you should. (On the upside, scrolling through the gallery is a great dieting trick. Appetite? What appetite?)

I figured I’d share a few tips for decent Instagrams of food, from a girl who’s been doing it for a long time (sorry, I am contractually egotistically obligated to now link to this): 

1. Don’t you ever use a flash.

2. Avoid artificial light at all cost. Either skip the pictures after dark or work with a very steady hand. Use your ‘real camera’ for beautiful food in low-lit restaurants. 

3. That said, if you must take a photo with a smart phone in a low-lit situation, focus on something that will translate well, like a delicately plated appetizer or dessert, rather than something shapeless and/or vaguely brown. Case in point: at dinner on Friday, I highlighted my hamachi-and-foie appetizer rather than M.’s pile of summer truffle risotto:

4. Don’t use a filter. 50% of what makes food look appetizing in photos is color. Messing with that — even changing the saturation — is very risky. (Put another way: vintage-y looking people are cute. Vintage-y looking food is not.) It took me awhile to learn this particular lesson. Here are two less-than-stellar examples from Nov. 2010 (note that I was also using the crappier iPhone 3 camera):

5. Experiment with using the tilt-shift/pin-point focus feature to subtly highlight the center or foreground of the food. Here I focused on the taco plate so that it stands out against the slider in the background:

6. Get up close and personal with the food — if it works with the food. (Fresh fruit: yes; bloody steak: probably not.) Bonus: both these examples employ the focus trick.

7. Back in the day (2009), the stand-by POV for food photos was from-the-side-and-just-above (the position I’m taking in this NYT portrait). Most pictures I take of food are from that vantage point, as you see in the examples above. However, over the past two years I’ve noticed a major trend (yes, trend), in photos of food take from bird’s eye view. Experiment with it.

8. If the lighting is good, use bird’s eye view to capture the abundance of a meal. Bitches love abundance.

9. Some food looks better raw. I’ve gotten a lot more ‘likes’ of gorgeous hunks of uncooked salmon than I have of them cooked, for example. This may also take care of the light issue. If you want to capture dinner, but dinner will be served after dark, snap it in its early prep stages. 

This:

versus that:

10. And finally, EAT. That food is getting cold and your friends are getting annoyed.

I hope I learn from this 🙂

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