photographing a cookbook + The Family Flavor giveaway!
.....just a few questions Whitney came up with about the whole "photograph a cookbook" process.... me. last winter. on whitney's head. photographing. pie.
What is it about food that you like photographing?
I get to eat it! I seriously loved showing up to a shoot at Whitney's and have 3...4...sometimes 5 dishes to try. I love that I can play around with each dish and style it a bit, and it won't run away from me like a 3 year old would. Food is beautiful. The whole process of taking a bit of this, and a pinch of that and bringing them together into a dinner, or a cake.....I just love that process. I love being able to capture it.
What camera gear do you use?
Canon 5D Mark II, and most of these photos were shot with a 24-70mm f /2.8 lens.
Where do you get all your props?
Everywhere. I pulled stuff from my own cupboards, from Whitney's cupboards. Clearance aisles at target. Garage sales and thrift stores for dishes and silverware. We wanted every recipe to look like an actual family meal--nothing too fancy or matchy or perfect. Real. I shopped Home Depot for boards and tiles for backgrounds.
What kind of food is your favorite to photograph?
Dessert! It's just so pretty. You really don't have to "style" desserts at all--just shoot (and eat) and they look great.
How did a typical shoot go?
This changed so much from when we started, to two years later when we wrapped things up. When we first started, I would load every single dish/spoon/board/material/EVERYTHING I had into my car and head to Whitney's. She would cook a dish and I would decide how I was going to shoot it. I had no plan. As we went on, and worked together more, we had a system down. We would figure out our menu for the next shoot and I would visualize how I was going to photograph it, and only bring what I needed for that shoot. Our first few shoots took 4-5 hours, we whittled it down to 1-2 hours.
What kind of food is hard for you to photograph?
Whitney answered this for me and said "MMMMMEEEEEAAAATTTTT!"
I'm not a huge meat eater, and when we started this whole thing I wasn't sure how I was going to photograph some of the meaty dishes....I just didn't have the vision. Like meatloaf! It's a loaf. Of meat. How can you photograph that? But with each meat dish I learned more and more what I liked to do (add color!), and what I didn't like, and soon got my meat-ography down. One of my favorite pictures is the Grilled Ribeye Steak with Rosemary Gorgonzola Butter.
Were there any mishaps in the food photographs that we wouldn't be able to notice?
We said right from the beginning that we would never "fake it" when we came to our photos. No tricks of the trade (like glue instead of milk in the cereal bowl). We would only photograph REAL food so the results look the same when YOU make it at home.
But from time to time stuff goes wrong, cakes break, and we had to roll with it.....
- a huge chunk of the Orange Cream Cake was missing--it broke apart when Whit took it out of the pan. Luckily we were able to find it's best angle to photograph it from. (pg 240)
-Whitney forgot to get sour cream for the Shredded Sweet Pork Tacos. I just didn't feel like the picture was complete without it, so we used whipped cream instead. (pg 73)
-I was shaving chocolate pieces onto the Chocolate Cream Pie and accidentally shaved part of my fingernail polish onto the pie......we had to pick out the red flakes! - (pg 239)
-Whitney was cooking 1000 things at once, and the sauce for the Braised Chicken with Mushrooms and Red Onions burned on the bottom and was totally stuck to the pan. We were able to scrape enough off the top for the photograph. (pg 29)
-Nothing went wrong, but it was really entertaining and hilarious photographing a whole fish at 9am in the morning. (pg 84)
-The crust fell off our piece of Crumb Top Apple Pie, so we had to prop the crust up with toothpicks. (page 220)
With the Spiced Pear Cheesecake, we didn't have an extra pear for the garnish, so she sauteed some apples and we pretended they were pears. (page 229).
And with that, the time has come to wrap up Cookbook Week. Thank you all again for your support this past week as we have celebrated the release of our book! I'll return back to regular blogging next week, but I'll be sure to let you know when we have exciting updates and deals you will want to check out.
To enter the giveaway just leave a comment--easy! And I'm going to do that super annoying thing so you'll help spread the word (we worked for 2 years on this book--we want the world to know!)
Share a link to our book on facebook/instagram/twitter/pinterest/your blog/chain letter......whatever it is you do, and come back and enter again (each link gets you another entry--spread the word, enter away!)
Comments will close on Wednesday, September 18 at 8:00pm MST. The Family Flavor is still on sale for $14.91 on Amazon--get your copy HERE. happy weekend!