Many thanks to Ilva at Lucullian Delights, for mentioning Still*Life~Style in her August 15 post. It was such a surprise and an honor, as I admire her many talents!
In recent years, food photography has moved toward presenting "real" food, and moved away from creating artificial perfection on the plate. Many of the food shots we execute now are closer and tighter in on for maximum taste appeal. Props may be limited to a plate and the surface it is on. With those shots, finding a surface with texture helps to add interest.
Fabrics and wood tables are givens, but there are all sorts of other options for small surfaces.
Photographer: Laurie Proffitt
In the above photo, I envisioned a very soft, natural toned environment for the yogurt and granola. The propping is minimal, but I wanted the background to have some impact. I tea stained a piece of muslin, then ripped it in strips and did a simple weave with the fabric. I am really happy with the subtle coloration, soft edging, and shadows in the piece. It was a bit of a project, but luckily a small set!
The chowder below sits on a surface of pale blue plaster that was applied over a wood board. The cool tone and weight of the plaster work well with the food, the cracking subtly echoes the cornbread.
Photographer: Stephen Hamilton
We wanted the fresh green of this avocado pizza to pop, and simple propping with non-color elements work well. The background is a board painted in greys, and then brushed with a sand wash paint to soften. The array of paints available these days is incredible, I get inspired just browsing in the craft and home decor stores.
Photographer: Michael Maes
Keep your mind, and your eyes, open to finding new and different textures to shoot on. Here are 2 quick grabs of larger props that in themselves make wonderful backgrounds for tighter shots.
Did you guess...these are simply a well used pizza stone, and a vintage tin baking sheet!