Okay, final post on Foodbuzz, I promise!
So after the Featured Panel Discussion, we broke for sessions. I signed up for the DSLR-Free Zone lecture and stayed around for the Effective Social Networking even though I had not originally signed up for it. It was worth my time to hear what they had to say.
The DSLR-Free Zone lecture was presented by Angi Chau (Rice and Wheat), Chuck Lai (Foodgawker) and Greg Henry (Sippity Sup). They are amazing bloggers and they do it without the use of a DSLR, which is fabulous because I don't have one. I'm so sorry for the foggy photo. They all deserved to be seen in crystal clear images. They offered up some of the most useful photography tips for food images!
Greg is a professional celebrity photographer by trade but he uses a point-and-shoot for all the images on his food blog. This boggles my mind! Here are some of his tips that I was able to jot down on how to have drool worth food photos using a point-and-shoot.
1) Simplify your image by removing clutter and unnecessary object out of the way. Don't ask your
point-and shoot to do more than it is capable of doing.
2) Narrate - your image should tell a story. Use props and color palette only if it helps with the flow of
3) Compose - Take time to set the stage for your food/plating. Use a "stand-in" to adjust for angle and
lighting so that when your food is ready to plate, the image will already be shoot ready.
4) Refine - edit/chop image in a way to help tell the story.
Angi who blogs over at Rice and Wheat talked about using a Micro Four Third format. A Micro four third camera is mirrorless, has a digital screen instead of a viewfinder and there are currently only 8 manufactures that produces these cameras.
Pros - closer in size to a point-and-shoot than a DSLR, electronic viewfinder, fewer moving parts,
deeper depth of field for equivalent aperture.
Cons - Small sensor, no optical viewfinder, auto focus is slower than DSLRs, fewer lens choices,
deeper field, you need to walk up close to the image, produces "noisy" images in low lighting.
Chuck blogs using images solely from his iPhone (by using his Instagram App). He says that the best camera you can own is the one that is always with you. Makes sense! He also says that he likes to take pictures with his iPhone because it is more discrete. Here are some tips from Chuck on how to make your Instagram images look their best.
1) Good lighting - when you first walk into a room/restaurant, evaluate the setting and identify the
light source and pick your seating according to the direction of the light.
2) Prepare your composition - clear the table around your image, compose the shot, capture the dish
from multiply angles, take the photos quickly as not to "weird out" the other diners.
3) Post process - make adjustments in photo editing software and crop in closer.
4) Low/Bad Lighting - bring your own light source (LED light).
Finally, Irvin Lin (Eat the Love) and Stella Parks (BraveTart) spoke about Effective Social Networking! Irvin is very upbeat and friendly and Stella, well she is a CIA trained pastry chef! I know, right? This presentation was very interesting to me because I am shy in-person and socializing online is like a dream come true. I can use all the tips I can get. Irvin and Stella both emphasized that you should use social media to increase your readership not just your hits. They said it was important to get to know your readers and develop a connection with them for long term success.
Some tips that they gave on how to effectively use social media:
1) Be yourself - seems like a no brain-er but apparently there are a lot of fakers out there or else why
would they keep reiterating this point. :)
2) Don't keep retweeting about your new blog post. It may cause some people to unfollow you. If you
do retweet about new blog postings, do it creatively.
3) Klout, Facebook and Google+ are other good social media platforms to be involved with.
Okay, that's all I have. Well that's all I have time for this. And that is the end of my Foodbuzz posting.
I am on my way out to Santa Barbara this weekend to run a marathon. Pray to the weather gods for me that it doesn't rain...too much! Have an awesome weekend!