Guest Post w/ Jeni of JeniFriend Photography – How to Shoot Great Photos

25 Feb

When I was planning my wedding I stumbled upon The Knot which is a website with everything wedding. It’s a little overwhelming, so I found myself hanging out on the boards. They have boards for everything, whether it be where you live, if you’re having a destination wedding, to the specific month and year you are getting married. When I joined that board I didn’t realize that I would make some magnificent friends.

One of them is Jeni, who is a professional wedding and lifestyle photographer based in Kansas City. I’m pretty sure if Jeni and I lived in the same city we would be best friends, because she is so full of life and energy and is just a great person overall. Jeni takes amazing photos, and if you have a chance, please head on over to her blog and website and check it out.

I am REALLY excited that she has decided to blog about food photography. As many bloggers know, the PHOTOS really tell the story. Sure, you can write a 500+ blog entry about the fantastic meal you made last night, but without great photos, the excitement can be really toned down for your readers. I hope you enjoy Jeni’s post and that you learn a little more about taking great pictures!


Aside from blogging about the various sessions I capture for the totally awesome families and couples who hire me, I really like to…how do I say this without being all hoity-toity…well…I like to blog about myself. Okay, not really myself in the first-person, but about my life and the adventures I have with those I love. Are you getting the jist of this? Either way…I talk about myself and my life and my family alongside photography. Today…I talk about food. Specifically…how to capture it so it doesn’t look revolting in camera.

First things first…food presentation. Take into consideration what plateware you’re using for your food. I may use the blue bowl for my chili when I’m sitting on the couch catching up on Jersey Shore, but I’m going to use the white bowl instead when I’m taking a picture. The food is your focus – ensure that it remains that way by selecting plateware that enhances the food.

Next up…location. As a natural light enthusiast, I avoid the use of artificial lighting. Living in an apartment, my kitchen doesn’t have any windows, so I have to relocate my setup to somewhere that does. Utilize what you have around you – I am a fan of tv trays, benches, railings…whatever, again, enhances but doesn’t take away from my image…

This picture was taken on a tv tray in my living room.

Next up…lighting. I typically photograph in the daytime so I’m able to take advantage of natural light. In my opinion, natural light allows any image to appear more real. Face your food towards your light source…

Or…place the light directly behind your food and allow it to cast a nice glow, as seen above with the water glass.

For those of you who are late-night bakers and can’t afford to wait until the sun comes up to take your pictures, invest in a white box…or if you’re like me…create your own with the use of white poster board, a white bedsheet, etc. Remember, the color you choose as your backdrop will be cast upon your food.

White is a natural reflector, so it’s going to give you additional light by bouncing around the existing lighting you have access to, and it’s not going to tint your images (which creates more work in post-processing).

Experiment and see what works for you in your food photography. Don’t be afraid to get up close and personal with your food…

group like items together and create a full-bodied image…

or include people…

I’m not a professional food Photographer by any means, but these are the tricks that have helped me in creating images ideal for my blog posts that pertain to delectable edibles. Have fun taking pictures and celebrating the moments!



5 Responses to “Guest Post w/ Jeni of JeniFriend Photography – How to Shoot Great Photos”

  1. Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic February 25, 2011 at 2:09 pm #

    These are great tips, thanks!!

  2. Megan February 25, 2011 at 3:51 pm #

    Wonderful tips! Thank you!

  3. Emily @ A Cambridge Story February 25, 2011 at 4:31 pm #

    These are gorgeous shots and great pointers!

  4. jenifriend February 25, 2011 at 8:58 pm #

    thank you so much for the opportunity to blog post, amanda! this was such a joy to put together!


  1. end of month photo breakdown « - February 28, 2011

    […] don’t really know how to do this whole tutorial thing. I just tried my hands at guest blog posting last week and received some positive feedback on it, but I’m no pro when it comes to breaking […]

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