The dishes that don’t cut the mustard……

Taking photographs of food is a funny thing, I always try to get my photos so that they look like the food that we have enjoyed as a family, so that it helps to inspire others to give the recipe a go themselves. Some of teh subjects are easier to photograph than others, and there’s so much to think of, is the light good enough, is the composition good enough, and most importantly is the food good enough.

Well I usually get the food right, I have the occasional disaster, but luckily these are few, and usually to do with baking cakes with a hangover. So just need to ensure the light is right, not always the easiest with a hungry young family who’s needs do not often coincide with the timings for the “golden hours” of early and evening light. As far as composition and dressing the image, I like to keep things simple and rustic, and as we’ve eaten them. Ok, ok so sometimes there is a rogue tea towel or a strategically placed beverage, but I believe that the best pictures tell a story about the food.

But sometimes it’s nigh on impossible to get the food looking right, and the hardest things to take a good photo of are the “brown foods” which can often taste out of this world, as the two examples I’ve included here, a Cauliflower Cheese with roasties and Bangers in Gravy which were served on piles of fluffy mash. Although warming and comforting meals that were enjoyed by my family, the photos just didn’t cut the mustard (pun intended as both dishes contain mustard) as they don’t jump out of the page.

It does make you wonder as you browse through all the lovely images on the plethora of food blogs and in food magazines, are they biased towards the photogenic dishes, the deconstructed foams and spheres of pea puree?

What do you think?   

12 responses to this post.

  1. What a great meals you’ve made. I hear you: the best food doesn’t appear on pictures as perfect as it tastes!

    Reply

    • Thank you Marina, it’s difficult sometimes to get the taste of a meal across in a photo, but I do try to make the photos as realistic and not set up like a lot of photos you see.
      Cheers
      Marcus

      Reply

  2. Pictures are so misleading sometimes. I hate having to say, it really is good…

    Reply

  3. I take so many photos at so many angles and there is still the possibility that I will have ugly food. I like the top picture.

    Reply

  4. Thanks Richard, I think I’d rather just get on and enjoy it instead of faffing around though.
    Just been googling cauli cheese, and bangers and mash, and there’s not many pretty pictures of either, and some of the bangers pics are quite hilarious!
    Cheers
    Marcus

    Reply

  5. I think with the bangers and gravy the trick would be to take some of the bangers out of the pot, keeping them fairly ‘dry’ and then try various amounts of gravy on them until they look right.

    Reply

  6. I completely agree! I’ve always gotten compliments about my photos of people, but food? Wow, I struggle to make it look good. As a new blogger, it is my number one frustration. Glad to see the pro’s have issues too.

    Reply

    • Thank you that’s very kind but I’m hardly a pro, just someone who loves their food 🙂
      It is hard work getting the right shot, and I could have filled this post with pics many times over.
      Cheers
      Marcus

      Reply

  7. Sadly not 😦 am away working at the moment. Though excited by having a whole summer of eating outdoors ahead, I’m sure I’ll get one or two nice pics then.
    Cheers
    Marcus

    Reply

  8. Exactly! Have had brown food dilemma’s too! The two above look like proper rustic family warming suppers, maybe the brown is just more autumnal – a seasonal thing? Brown food in summer is not so appealing unless livened up with a bright zingy salad. As we feel the sun our desire for brown foods decreases, just as the spring greens are ready to hit our plates….. until autumn, when brown food comes back to warm and comfort….

    Reply

  9. I bet you get some good ones this weekend outside in the sunshine though 😉

    Reply

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BUTTER WOULDN'T MELT

Stories from the hearth

The BBQ World of mrdodd

Making simple food great, and great food right.

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UK BBQ Review

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