By Patrick Hinton

Taking your food and nutrition photos from boring to brilliant can often be a challenge. I have spent a lot of time myself behind the camera trialling what works best. Here are my top five tips on how you can take your photos to the next level.


  1. Create layers in your image.

Using a few simple items can transform your 2-D like photo into a catchier 3-D version. To achieve this, simple props like tea towels, glasses of water, chopping boards or some scattered salad leaves can make all the difference. This added depth draws viewers in to spend more time looking at your image. There is no exact rule to this, so I always use trial and error until I achieve something I am happy with.


  1. Thinking about lighting

Natural sunlight is always the best and easiest light source to use. So being in a naturally well-lit location is ideal. Artificial lighting when used properly can also work well (particularly when you cannot take images during the day or it is grey outside). However, more time, money and effort is required to achieve similar results to natural light. My favourite two places for food photography are on a table right next to a large window, or an outside balcony or deck.


  1. Colour is key

Using a variety of foods with different colours and textures is a great way to create a more enticing image. Vegetables, fresh herbs and fruits are great objects to achieve this. Not only will this improve your photo, but it will also make the dish healthier and add more flavour too. A win-win if you ask me.


  1. Know your focus

To get that arty effect of a blurry background coupled with a crisp foreground focal point (photographers call this bokeh), make sure to think about what you are focusing on. For example in the image below I focused closely on the beans in the foreground. This meant the food and items in the background became unfocused, creating that pleasing contrasting effect. To achieve this on your phone, simply tap the screen on the item you wish to focus on when using the camera application. Being closer to your item in focus will also help. This may take a little practice, but the results (once you get the hang of things) will be pleasing.


  1. Consider a quick edit once you have captured your shot

It is very easy to get overwhelmed when trying to edit a photo. However, one easy thing to adjust is your brightness. I rarely get the lighting of the shot exactly right, so having the option to alter this after can make a great difference. I regularly use Adobe Lightroom to edit my images. However, there are many free and easy to use apps like VSCO, Snapseed and Instagram that allow you to correct or improve your picture.


Have fun capturing your next food photos and use these steps to make your photos pop!