Thursday, August 21, 2014

ThePatch :: Kitchen/Let’s Eat

This is the last of the patch themes on the kitchen and simple captioned let’s eat. I had already figured out in the ingredient challenge that there is a fair bit more to photographing food than a simple set up and snap. Perhaps I can become a food blogger after all.

In search of Colour &/or Composition

My first investigation was colour, more specifically the impact of the background colour on the richness of the food. No surprises here, the background colour has a big impact! But which smoked salmon roll looks the tastiest?
_IGP5972  IMGP5967  _IGP5970_1
My next thought it I need to add something to Strengthen the composition, more dramatic positive & negative spaces or maybe just simplify the subject matter?
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Over-cooked with HDR

IMGP5968-HDR (1)-001  IMGP5979-HDR-001  IMGP6009-HDR (1)-001
I thought I would also try out some more HDR, the google+ autoawesome variety (above) and also even using HDR Camera (below) on my android phone (to consolidated the food blogger feel), They are snappy but I’m not convinced that the clinical sharpness and strength of HDR dynamic range stretching is how I like to see food, I think food needs to be gooier and softer, perhaps even with a warmer glow.
2014-08-21_13-12-51_HDR  2014-08-21_13-17-39_HDR

Some Pop Art Inspiration

I am still reading (and enjoying) Beyond Digital Photography. It has a chapter of using pop artist as an inspiration for a creative photo manipulation. Personally I find Andy Warhol’s Campbell Soup cans pretty boring and mundane (but I believe that was his point). I do like both Wayne Thiebaud and David Hockney’s food still-lives, but neither really considered themselves pop artists. They both use simple colour and shadows to help the form and composition so I figured I needed to get outdoors, to stronger light. My first objective was to use fewer colours and the technique usually call posterization let me limit the palette to just 7 colours. Yes that gave me an “arty” look but it was very dull (and contrived) so I just upped the saturation and contrast (ok a little harsh) so I use layered compositing and masking to add some detail and tone down selected areas with a semi translucent (lower opacity) using OnOne’s Perfect Layers. Success! I like the result it is ambiguously between a photo and something an artist might paint.
Original Photo Posterized Version Heavy on Saturation_IGP6024-002

This technique does required a few steps and jumping between programs. I did like the shadows on the wooden table in a different photos (without the place mat) so I ran that through the method again, with a less heavy hand on the saturation on the posterized layer and more feathering of the opacity between the original photo layer and the posterized version (see below)

Its a slice of banana, nut & chocolate cake with some strawberries & greek yoghurt, was delicious!

The Moral: I’d probably rather eat the food, than delay the enjoyment while I photographed it.
However using this as an art inspired challenged was fun.But enough playing with food.
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