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Food photographers and stylists


hathor
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I've a photo project ahead of me and I've been looking at a lot of food photos lately. Now, I'm curious, who do you love?

Whose images consistently make you stop in your tracks? Who makes your heart beat faster?

Today, I'm in love with Sergio Herman's Oud Sluis images on the restaurant's website. The website comes with music, just warning you.

I love Shola Olunloyo's Studio Kitchen blog photos. They are clean, clear, but interesting. There is attitude going on, even with all that minimalism.

I'm getting a little tired of white ground, intense close ups. I like when the image hints at a bigger story going on. Lucy Vanel, known as Bleudauvergne on eGullet, has photos that always tell a story. She has a knack for romanticism without being sappy.

I just two books that have fantastic images: "Au Pied de Cochon" and "Olivier Roellinger's Contemporary French Cuisine". (sorry, I don't know how to do the Amazon linking thing). The use of color in the Contemporary French Cuisine is marvelous.

So, who do you love?

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There are a number of really good food photographers here on eGullet, some of whom you have mentioned. Two of the very best are Philadining and Yellow Truffle. One of the very best though is Harlan Turk who doesn't so much photograph food as he does food people. His photos of this year's Beard Awards are simply sensational.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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When I used to do the monthly eGullet digest for Bon Appetit magazine, I fell in love with Pornchai Mittongtare's photographs. Here's his web site:

Pornchai Mittongtare's web site

It's Flash driven so be forewarned.

I also enjoyed the work of Brian Leatart & Gary Moss in the magazine, as well.

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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I like when the image hints at a bigger story going on. Lucy Vanel, known as Bleudauvergne on eGullet, has photos that always tell a story. She has a knack for romanticism without being sappy.

Chufi also does excellent shots - usually incorporating some kind of interesting other object that adds color and compliments the subject.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Today, I'm in love with Sergio Herman's Oud Sluis images on the restaurant's website.  The website comes with music, just warning you.

my radar picked up on these Dutch words :smile: The pics on the Oud Sluis website are by famous Belgian food photographer Tony le Duc.

Chufi also does excellent shots - usually incorporating some kind of interesting other object that adds color and compliments the subject.

:blush:

I am by no means a photographer, so I take this as a great compliment :smile:

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For photograph/styling, our own Ling and Patrick S

and then, for cookbooks, my favorite photographer is Ron Manville. He does the shots for Grace Ormonde's Wedding Style Magazine and he did Sherry Yard's book.

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Harlan Turk, as docsconz mentioned, though his category expands beyond "food".

Heidi Swanson.

There is some very fine work there!

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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In the sub-genre of restaurant food photography, I haven't come across much better than molto e's.

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Wow. That is some beautiful work. The Mittongtare photos have a very sensuous quality to them that I like.

And you are 1000% right about Chufi's work, there is that sense of place that always come thru. And beautiful composition. There was a photo in her recent blog, with roses in the background that was absolutely stunning.

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I agree that amongst our ranks, Ling, Patrick and Chufi are outstanding. Sometimes I think they could take a picture of mud and make me want to eat it.

And here's the reason I mention those guys versus the others that have been mentioned - they are doing it with minimal modification/photoshopping, etc. Its sort of a photo in the raw.

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Gfron, you may have identified what it is that makes me respond to Ling and Chufi's photos. I'm not familiar with Patrick's, my apologies.

They have a sense of immediacy and 'truthiness'.

How many white plates with bits of tangled micro greens can we look at?

Tina Rupp's pictures are indeed beautiful, and the ones that I emotionally respond to are the ones on the wooden board, or in crocks.

The white plate minimalism may have sacrificed emotion. I'm thinking out loud here, but beautiful food is a feast for the senses, and the minimalist trend may be ignoring that.

Edited by hathor (log)
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I agree that amongst our ranks, Ling, Patrick and Chufi are outstanding.  Sometimes I think they could take a picture of mud and make me want to eat it.

And here's the reason I mention those guys versus the others that have been mentioned - they are doing it with minimal modification/photoshopping, etc.  Its sort of a photo in the raw.

Not to take anything away from the photgraphers, but how do you know that they are using minimal modification?

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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We'll have to wait for true confessions from our band of merry food photographers, but to me minor modifications are what I do - adjust color balance and contrast/brightness. Many of the professionals are doing saturation adjustments, color alterations, and white box photography (Patrick appears to be doing this one).

Here's an example of what I consider minimal:

gallery_41282_4652_23822.jpg

I set the dessert on top of a lamp draped in fabric. No other adjustments except the basics I mentioned above.

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food photogs at the top of my list are Petrina Tinslay, David Munns, Jean Cazals, and even self-taught cook/food photog Alastair Hendy. come to think of it i spend over Eur.50/month on UK/DE/FR/OZ etc cookery magazines alone primarily for the stunning photography. rarely use them for cooking!

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For photograph/styling, our own Ling and Patrick S

and then, for cookbooks, my favorite photographer is Ron Manville.  He does the shots for Grace Ormonde's Wedding Style Magazine and he did Sherry Yard's book.

Ditto. They both have some wonderful shots - very good composition and great use of depth of field and color. I just happen to have Patrick_S' flickr page bookmarked here.

Also, checkout David Lebovitz' flickr page here. (He has lots of sets; I just chose the Paris Sweets page as an example).

Another one I like is ulterior epicure, another eGulleter. You can checkout his pix here.

John DePaula
formerly of DePaula Confections
Hand-crafted artisanal chocolates & gourmet confections - …Because Pleasure Matters…
--------------------
When asked “What are the secrets of good cooking? Escoffier replied, “There are three: butter, butter and butter.”

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I agree that amongst our ranks, Ling, Patrick and Chufi are outstanding.  Sometimes I think they could take a picture of mud and make me want to eat it.

And here's the reason I mention those guys versus the others that have been mentioned - they are doing it with minimal modification/photoshopping, etc.  Its sort of a photo in the raw.

Not to take anything away from the photgraphers, but how do you know that they are using minimal modification?

wow, thank you all, for the compliments :smile:

I haven´t posted a single picture on eGullet that hasn´t gone through numerous adjustments in photoshop or Picasa. Color, saturation, brightness, but most importantly, cropping (which is, I think, very underused and the easiest tool to make an amateur pic look more professional and interesting).

But, I have a very simple camera, no lighting system (which is why I take much more foodpics in summertime than in November), and I take 20 or more ugly pics for every nice one I post on eGullet. :smile:

I really like Jonathan Lovekin´s pictures in Nigel Slater´s Kitchen Diaries (allthough I do not like the book), and I guess that is because all the pics are of real food, sometimes plates that are half empty, messy pans, etc. Food meant to be eaten. I think that´s what makes many pics on eGullet so alluring: you KNOW that it´s real food.

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So, who does the sexiest food shots? I don't mean vulgar stuff like with a banana...but that subtle sex under current? Who is the Helmut Newton of the food world? Is there one?

Maybe sex is the wrong word, maybe I'm looking for sensuous.

Grrr. Chufi, I'm with you on lighting. It's tough with a home set up and a spouse that wants to eat.

edit to add: I also have not bonded with my tripod. We fight a lot.

Edited by hathor (log)
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For photograph/styling, our own Ling and Patrick S

and then, for cookbooks, my favorite photographer is Ron Manville.  He does the shots for Grace Ormonde's Wedding Style Magazine and he did Sherry Yard's book.

Ditto. They both have some wonderful shots - very good composition and great use of depth of field and color. I just happen to have Patrick_S' flickr page bookmarked here.

Also, checkout David Lebovitz' flickr page here. (He has lots of sets; I just chose the Paris Sweets page as an example).

Another one I like is ulterior epicure, another eGulleter. You can checkout his pix here.

Thanks John..those are all excellent photos. You are right about the use of color and depth of field.

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  • 1 month later...
I really like Jonathan Lovekin´s pictures in Nigel Slater´s Kitchen Diaries (allthough I do not like the book)...

:shock: Why, pray tell? I agree about the appeal of the photographs--and precisely for the reasons you specify. However, it sounds as if a thread in Food Lit is in order if one doesn't exist already.

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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