Meatballs Etc Blog

How to get the Best Food Shots for Instagram

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Instagram is one of the top social media platforms now, especially for foodies! If you scroll through a popular food blogger account you are likely to see close ups of brightly colored salads, fresh juices, cheeseburgers too large to eat and huge cheese pulls on a dish of pasta. So, what is the secret behind their perfectly curated feed? It’s actually a method of following some super simple rules to getting the best food pictures! We’ve broken it down for you in a few easy steps.

Step One: Pick a great background

Ever seen a picture that has an awesome subject, but the background is distracting because it’s blurry, dirty or just plain unappealing? This is key in food photography. In a restaurant with a cool vibe, check out your surroundings. Do the tables have an awesome surface, is there a statement wall, do they have checkered napkins that might make a cool background, does their menu board stand out? You are the photographer, so you get to take your food on a journey throughout the restaurant- go for it! Take a few different shots: one from above with a few dishes on a table, one held up with a bright wall in the background- get creative and see what works, you might surprise yourself!

Step Two: Not too close

Yes, a lot of food shots are “close ups” but sometimes too close is in fact “too close”. If the photo starts to blur or you miss the point of the entire dish, it might be time to back up a bit or try a different angle.

Step Three: Lighting matters

When snapping a photo of food, it’s important to have great lighting! A general rule of thumb for food bloggers is to dine by the window in the afternoon- this way you get the perfect sunlight and a brightly lit table to show off your dish! Some lighting tips to avoid include taking pictures of food under a heating lamp or in a glass case. Both of these can give your picture an unwanted glare. 

Step Four: Colors, Colors, Colors!

Last, but certainly not least, get colorful! Food is incredible to shoot photos of because it can be colorful, textured, and styled in an exciting way. Top a dish with scallions, parmesan cheese or powdered sugar for a really cool effect or add a side of bright greens to an otherwise monotone colored dish. Customize in a creative way and enjoy the visual effects!

Whether you’re taking a picture of a juicy steak or latte art, get creative with it and have fun. Follow our few simple steps and tag #MeatballsEtc so we can see your creations! All posts using this hashtag will be entered in to win a free Instagram-worthy meal at Meatballs, Etc! Winner will be announced on our Instagram.