Lights, camera, action: do blog photos need to be styled?

It’s something I’ve been pondering for a while: do I need to up my photography game if I’m really going to take blogging seriously, or am I doing okay?!

Most of the recipes I share are, in my mind, ones I feel others would want to eat – not in a that looks like the greatest meal on earth kinda way, more like I have those things in the house too, maybe I could give it a whirl. And to my mind, most people when cooking or baking, don’t have the time, lighting or necessary props available to make their snaps magazine worthy; and really, should we? What is wrong with a bit of honesty?

After all, I am a normal gal with an iPhone, who mostly forgets she has a Canon Powershot and is often too hungry or tired to spend half an hour arranging my meal on boards, plates and with sparkly decorations in the background etc. till it looks ‘perfect’. I mean, who eats like that at home? Who even eats like that in a restaurant? I personally like my food to still be warm when I eat it…

But, I look at other food and lifestyle blogs and a lot seem to excel in this department. I certainly like to look at their photos, but I keep wondering are they necessary for me? Or am I being naïve, is it essential these days in order to be taken seriously? It then makes me doubt myself, am I creative enough to pull it off if it is essential? I mean my natural skill is in making yummy things (subjective, I know) out of everyday ingredients, as well as trying my hand at all manner of bakes (my first love!) – not as a photographer or stylist.

Do you think I should put more effort into that side of things? Is it necessary to style every recipe and take photos using my camera in restaurants? If any of you have been through this dilemma before, do you have any advice for me? Good or bad, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Sian x


2 thoughts on “Lights, camera, action: do blog photos need to be styled?

  1. Moya says:

    Styling a recipe could be as simple as placing a spoon or a knife next to a dish, or setting the dish on a wooden board or a colorful cloth. You don’t have to own lots of fancy props either or spend hours doing so. It just depends on how you would like to present your food on your blog. Good lighting is important when taking images of food and natural daylight is always best, unless you own special studio lights. Grainy and dark images of food are never appealing. I love styling food images because it’s something I enjoy doing and it only came with practice. There are plenty of tips on the web regarding food photography, even if you only want to use your phone camera. Happy snapping 🙂

    • sianjulian says:

      I lnow what you mean i’m certainly a fan of simplicity… I know natural light definitely looks best! Will see if there are any simple things i can try, i’m a big fan of wood! Practice definitely doed makes perfect 😊

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