“Because I wasn’t taking good pictures, I dismissed food photography as something I didn’t do very well.”
Even though I haven’t shot food commercially, I was always interested in it. I tried to take pictures of what I cooked at home but didn’t feel inspired. Then Ariel announced the workshop. I looked at her portfolio and thought I could learn how she does it.
How a food photographer approaches light is very different from what I thought
I am a portrait photographer, where it’s all about the light. But lighting a face is not as complex as lighting a 360-degree still life. That’s why I was very interested in the technical aspects of food photography: where the light comes from and how to block it.
I thought: first you style the scene and then you shoot it
I had no idea that with food, you actually create the scene in your camera and change it live. That was very, very interesting. What’s also intriguing is the positioning of the food and the harmony between the elements. Just looking at a scene, you can tell right away if it’s visually beautiful or not. It’s really an art form.
The price is great, and reasonable
Many photography workshops are expensive, some cost even $700 a day. This one was wonderfully priced so I could indulge in it.
What I really appreciated was the help offered by Ariel, Valeria and Michelle and their availability to help you style the scene. Giving their comments about how you are doing and then helping you do it better.
Often, workshops just leave you and afterwards, there is a critique
But here they are right there with you and encourage you while you are shooting. And when I sometimes struggled to create a scene, they helped me create it and I could just light it.
I realized I might be able to do something like this
Each of the three added something. Michelle gave me confidence with positioning everything. Valeria and Ariel’s help with light and styling. Before, you would give me all the stuff and I was not sure what to do with it.
But today, after taking pictures here in the kitchen and over there, and just looking at how Michelle styles it beautifully, I feel inspired. I want to go home and try to recreate some of these incredibly beautiful pictures from Pinterest and see if I can do this myself. Just for fun.
Vivian Doan, Portrait Photographer