Cookie Staging/Photography

I didn't see a topic on this so please forgive me if I missed it. I am in awe of many of the photographs that several cookiers take of their cookies, Julia is one. 

 

I want to learn how to take better pictures of my cookies but am stumped as to how to do so. Do I need to take a food styling/staging class? Do I need to take a food photography class? Etc? I have been online looking and there is just so much out there it's overwhelming. I'm not trying to spend a ton of money and spend tons of time in classes but I really want to enhance my cookies and any other products I take pictures of as it relates to my cookies. 

 

I live in Laurel, MD and any input would be so great! I'm literally overwhelmed as to what to do? Do you all take your own pictures of do you hire someone? Oh and I need a photo editing software as well as a course on how to use it!!!! Arggghhhh! Help PLEASE! 

 

Thanks!

Leigh Lawrie

Original Post

This is a great spot for this topic, since photography ties so clearly into effective marketing of cookies/products. Thanks for asking the question!

 

I have some thoughts, but I'd like to hear from others first, as I don't consider myself an expert on the topic. 

I learned how to use a camera from reading books. I remember Honeycat cookies and Sugarbelle have articles on their websites about how to take good cookie photos and I'm sure they are useful too.

 

I always take cookie photos under the natural light. I can never take good photos at night. Also I always edit photos using Picasa. I suppose there are lots more useful softwares to edit photos, but Picasa is easy to use even for me (I'm not good at these things at all!) and good enough for me at the moment.

In order to make your cookies look better, it's important where to put them. I often use coated paper for scrap booking.

 

I'm still learning and often struggle with taking photos, but I hope this will help.

Thank everyone. So since this post, I realized that at the college where I work there is a 4 day 3 hrs Intro to Adobe Photoshop class that we can take to fulfill our professional development requirement so I signed up!

I also have a small area in my crafting room where I have photo lights, stands and backdrops. While I know everyone recommends natural light, the way my apartment sits there isn't a ton coming into my apartment. I do have a balcony I can use once it gets warmer.
Originally Posted by Leigh:
Thank everyone. So since this post, I realized that at the college where I work there is a 4 day 3 hrs Intro to Adobe Photoshop class that we can take to fulfill our professional development requirement so I signed up!

I also have a small area in my crafting room where I have photo lights, stands and backdrops. While I know everyone recommends natural light, the way my apartment sits there isn't a ton coming into my apartment. I do have a balcony I can use once it gets warmer.

Great - I work in Photoshop. I had my graphic designer spend 1 hour with me showing me the basic commands and that's all the training I ever got. But a longer course should be good, as I definitely only take advantage of a small portion of its functionality.

Originally Posted by Leigh:
Thank everyone. So since this post, I realized that at the college where I work there is a 4 day 3 hrs Intro to Adobe Photoshop class that we can take to fulfill our professional development requirement so I signed up!

I also have a small area in my crafting room where I have photo lights, stands and backdrops. While I know everyone recommends natural light, the way my apartment sits there isn't a ton coming into my apartment. I do have a balcony I can use once it gets warmer.

Hi! I am no expert, but I love photography...and Cookiers! So, I had to share with you. I get to take pictures of boxes for our little box shop's website (www.brpboxshop.com) - and I LOVE it. I know, now you're wishing YOU could take pictures of boxes instead of sweet little elaborate works of art, right?

 

Anyhoo, I use Adobe Photoshop, too. I've learned quite a bit from reading, but I've learned more from doing. My favorite 'go to' site for short little tutorials is Phlearn.com. For backdrops, check out Ink & Elm.

 

I wish you success and can't wait to see your pictures!

 

As was mentioned, scrapbooking paper often makes a great background. I also find that solid color poly folders(like the kids use for school) work good too! They come in bright colors and I like the fact that I can wipe them off. You can also bend them 90 degrees at the fold so you have a base and background all in one color.  Easy to store and fast to take a picture with.

Ahhh....soooo glad you brought up this subject. I was telling my husband the other day that I enjoy taking the pictures more than any part of the whole cookie process.

 

I was in a magnet program in high school for photography and one of the classes was on food photography (at the time, I thought when in the WORLD will I EVER take pictures of food?!). The obvious part is having good lighting (I always use natural unless if time is an issue) and some sort of texture to the background. I also use scrap booking sheets as they are cheap, easy to access all sorts of patterns, and you can get them with a flat finish (anything with sheen will mess us pictures...my opinion).

I like to use items that will help create some sort of depth for the cookies so they aren't all flat. I don't particularly love flat photos unless if I am only take a picture of one or two cookies...

I did invest in a good camera (I have a Nikon D5100) with a good filter. I used the photo editing software that came with my Nikon. I have always wanted to learn to use Photoshop, but have an issue finding the extra time...on my to-do list lol!

These days, people have such AWESOME camera features on their phones that they don't need to go out and purchase expensive cameras. So...

Anyway, again, I think the photography is the most fun part or all...you get to preserve your little masterpieces forever!

Make sure to share some of the photo shop techniques once you learn them! I am sure there are zillions of people on here that would love to learn the basics.

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Barbara at Blue Sky CookiesMilyTheTailoredCookiemrshugsBRP Box Shop - Boxmaker AnnCookie Me This ~ HeidiEconlady
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