May 17, 2010

Fast food

Not long ago I was asked to shoot some party-style portraits at a nearby event. I packed light and made sure to arrive well in time. That’s when the manager of the event site called me apart and asked for a favor: could I ‘quickly’ make a picture of that day’s appetizer, for the website and for perhaps a future flyer?

Anyone that has ‘tasted’ food photography will know that it is a complex and delicate matter. Composition and control of light are key, and so are proper preparation and a good dose of patience.
And there I was with just a 50mm lens, no tripod, and one single hotshoe flash (luckily with stand and umbrella). Ten minutes to go before the people would start moving in.

Don’t you love these instant challenges?

I will not claim the above picture to be the best I can do, but all things considered I am pretty pleased with the outcome. SB-800 at 1/4 power through an umbrella high up from behind, slightly to the right, as the main light. A large piece of white corrugated board (a flattened old shipping carton, to be precise) folded into a V-shape and held below and left from the camera by a willing hand, to add some fill. Shot handheld at 1/160s, f/6.3, ISO200.
I did not even take the time to change the flash power setting.

It’s so much fun when a simple setup turns out to work just fine.

Gear notes: D700, 50/1.8

Click on the image(s) to see a larger version

No comments: