Vegetarian food blogger and author of Bowls of Goodness, Nina Olsen, is renowned for her beautiful bowls and carefully careless elegance. One sweep of her Instagram is enough to transform any meat-lover into a plant-loving foodie. ‘’I'm always looking for a minimal approach in terms of props so I often avoid patterns and too much decoration. By keeping it simple, not only does the shot become stronger, more people can identify with it. And there’s a certain elegance in keeping it cool without being smug. ‘’I try to think of the food as a visual tool and keep to one, or a few, strong focal points that highlight delicious areas of the food. I think a very natural leisurely look is more appealing as when the styling is too decorated or controlled, it puts people off! But the most important thing to remember is if you post shots that you really like, everyone else will too!’’
If you own an Instagram account and, well, eat food, the chances are you’ve snapped a photo of your latest meal.
And now that it is perfectly acceptable – nay, obligatory – to document every avocado and smoothie bowl that you eat, knowing how to take a professional-looking photo is more important than ever.
From Zanna Van Dijk’s fabulous brunches to Nina Olsen’s beautiful buddha bowls, we asked for some expert advice from the top foodies on Instagram on how to achieve the perfect mouth-watering shot.
Keep your cool
Oil me up
From the sticky glaze of salted caramel that droops tantalisingly over a stack of brownies, to the textured array of ingredients that he manages to arrange - not cram – onto every plate, it’s hard to believe that Hugo Davies’ photos are all shot on his phone! ‘’I usually drizzle olive oil on my dishes to finish. However, as an amateur that uses a mobile phone for pictures, I sometimes fill a cheap spray bottle with oil instead and unleash a shiny, glossy mist over the food. It helps to translate succulence and picks up light quite well.’’
It's all in the angle
Food and fitness blogger Zanna Van Dijk has recently co-founded Instagram account @londonbrunchguide, along with her boyfriend Antony Maule, featuring photos of their latest brunch endeavours across the city. From sweet pancakes to savoury classics, this one’s a breakfast lover’s dream.
‘’Lighting is key! We always ask for a seat beside the window to allow for natural lighting as this ensures the clearest images. Also, choose your angle and stick with it! Whether that's flat-lays (photos from the top down) or depth-of-field shots (where you focus in on one dish). ‘’And if you’re photographing a meal out, order a variety of dishes including some sides and drinks, as this adds different events and dimensions to your photos.’’