- Paperback: 288 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (May 3, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0470932139
- ISBN-13: 978-0470932131
- Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (123 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #247,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Plate to Pixel: Digital Food Photography & Styling 1st Edition
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...shows us how to make food photos look delicious, exploring tips and techniques used by the pros. (Digital Photography Enthusiast, July 2011).
'Honestly, and I don't say this lightly: if you buy one book on photography make it this one.' (Modern Country Style, Sept 2011)
'Helene Dujardin s guide to photographing food is a great practical read for budding photographers...this book is full of inspiring images that are sure to encourage you to get behind the lens. (Digital Photographer, March 2012)
From the Back Cover
Feast on these great recipes for mouthwatering food photos
Pictures have power. When you know how to make a dessert look so luscious that you gain two pounds just gazing at it, you have the power to tease taste buds from miles away. Whether you showcase the spectacular creations coming out of your own kitchen or aspire to a career in food photography, you'll devour the information in these pages.
Photographing food is an art. Develop your food photography skills with these techniques.
Discover how to use natural light to capture stunning images
Learn how to work with your camera modes and settings
See how to fine-tune exposure
Discover how to compose the most appetizing photo
Tell your story with light
Add pizzazz with herbs, sauces, and easy styling techniques
Learn trade secrets for photographing items such as ice cream and stews
Develop an after-capture workflow process to improve your food photos
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Top Customer Reviews
About half the book addresses technical issues (basics, camera modes, natural light, artificial light, post-processing [unread]), it is a shame that these chapters are riddled with so many mistakes, some minor and some huge. And when there are no mistakes, technicals aspects are sometimes poorly explained. Begginners reading this book will be confused, more advanced photographers will cringe.
Dujardin is a talented artist with a good eye for composition, styling, colors and lighting, but is sadly lacking on the technical side. She compensates for this with her own artistic sense, but alas she tries to explain photography in technical terms and fails.
She should have either steered away from technical discussions, or have those chapters written (or at least proof-read) by a more technically competent photographer. I would not recommend this book (in the present edition) to someone starting out. Or perhaps I'd tear the first half off and attach some better resources to it (ie : Understanding Exposure for basics, and Strobist.com for artifical light)
Some examples of inaccuracies :
- some captions not matching the pictures (as in page 54, caption says "soft light" but it is hard and undiffused as described in the text)
- on p.31 the phrase "these pears were shot with a wide aperture and shallow depht of field" might lead a begginner to think these are two distinct settings.
Not so minor :
- on p.81 calling a speedlight on the camera's hot shoe an "off-camera flash" (even if you bounce the light)
- on p.73 the setup shot and description are confusing. Text seems to indicate the light goes through the umbrella, bounces on the ceiling and back at the subject, but looking at the setup it seems as if most of the light hitting the food is the light bounced from the umbrella, not the ceiling.
- on p.60 "the light [...] was very strong, even though it was diffused, and this created a shallow depht of field" : DoF does not depend on the amount or type of light.
- on p.86 "The second bounce further further increased the amount of light[...] and this helped to create a more pleasing depht of field" : same as above.
I haven't read the less technical chapters and believe (hope) that I might yet learn something valuable from this book, but I find the above issues extremely distracting.
EDIT : I have now finished reading the book. While I stand by my previous criticism, the book does fulfill its main objectives. It provides some very usefull tips for food photography, especially in the styling department (props, colors, ...) and with its beautiful pictures, it is also inspiring (both photographically and for cooking) Perhaps the "tips" could be more clearly presented (lists ?) rather than mentionned conversationnaly in the text but that is of minor importance.
I've upgraded my initial rating from 2 stars to 3.
UPDATE: After doing more food photography for local clients, I realized the importance of shooting in both landscape AND portrait format. Nearly every photo in the book is a vertical shot, making it much less useful for a client to use on a website or on social media.
Why the author never shoots horizontally is a mystery.
Finally, I think it's ridiculous that she doesn't tell the reader what shutter speed she uses! This is especially important to know for the action shots (pouring syrup, etc.).