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Food Photography

Lesson 18 of 19

Shoot: Farm Table Dinner

 

Food Photography

Lesson 18 of 19

Shoot: Farm Table Dinner

 

Lesson Info

Shoot: Farm Table Dinner

Okay, so this is it. This is our final push. I talk about final pushes a lot when I'm on an assignment. So we have this amazing farm table dinner. We brought in a food stylist, and can you just come here and tell us what you made? And can I get a camera to follow us as we talk about it? [Camera Woman] - Sure And introduce yourself to the live network. Hi, my name is Anne Turnamiska and I made this food. I pretty much went to the markets and purchased everything there, and whatever I couldn't get from my own yard, cause I grow vegetables, et cetera, so a lot of it's from my yard. The soup is a... This is my cheat notes. A fennel saffron soup with grilled oysters, has a little pernil. [Penny] - Beautiful. There's with a little cream. And these are just local market. They were so gorgeous, the little radishes and carrots, and some sea salt to dip it in. Grilled asparagus, sorry Penny. A salad from my garden, it's all mixed greens and herbs with a tarragon vinaigrette. And this pasta i...

s a pappardelle with pea vines, Siberian kale, just gorgeous at the market. Let's see, rapini and some lemon zest, and odd local cheeses, interesting. A really delicate, white, creamy one, the flavor was so good I just had to use it, and another firmer cheese, it's great. Let's see what else. [Penny] - Then you've got your beverages This is a rosemary infused lemonade, basically, it's one of my favorites. I hope you like that. [Penny] - Awesome. And for dessert we have a rhubarb strawberry crisp, and it has, let's see. Cardamom and nutmeg, and a little almond meal in the topping, and a little almond flavor in the whipped cream. Wow. It should be good. Beautiful. Enjoy it. Thank you so much. You're welcome. This is a beautiful table. This is a gorgeous table. Okay, I'm a little annoyed that I can't photograph this. When we decided to do this, I wanted to recreate a moment that I'd had in the field, and basically, I always have to shoot a dinner. I'm always shooting a meal. I was like, we gotta make a meal happen for CreativeLive. This is the meal, this is a lot more beautiful than a lot of the meals I get to photograph. This should be pretty easy for you guys, as far as I'm concerned. I'm gonna give them, (all laugh) we should have serious heroes in this one. I'm gonna give you two assignments. Two shooters, two assignments, okay? Same assignment. Can I give them, what, ten minutes? It's kind of like a quick fire challenge again. Okay, so we've talked about this all day. You've seen my pictures, you saw me work, so you have the action down, okay? The first one, you two are starting, right? Okay, I want you to look for a portrait, and a food scene. Food scene is obvious, okay? That's your easiest picture, and because of that, let's not even make that an assignment, but you need a food scene, just know that. Your assignment is a portrait, and the food. Those two things, that's all I want you to focus on. A portrait and food, but I also wanna see a food scene. Go for it guys. And these guys are, whatever you wanna do with them. Penny, my camera. The camera I'm borrowing isn't working yet. [Penny] - So we're just gonna let them do their thing, if you guys have questions for me and you wanna talk about it at all, I want you to access me, okay? I don't think they can hear me. So let's just watch them work, let's see what they're doing, I'm gonna kind of follow them, see if it works. (crowd talking loudly) That's okay, crumbs are good. [Penny] - Cathleen, if you need me at any point, I just want you to shout out and say "Penny, how do I do this," or "What do you think I should do?" I may do that, because I'm using a camera that's not mine. (camera clicks) [Penny] - You should've done, just think about always revolving around the table several times. Seeing it? Nice. [Photographer] - Do you feel self conscious yet? There we go. (camera clicks) Okay [Penny] - Do you guys have any questions for me? Shawna, you okay? Yup. [Penny] - Alright. All I'm doing is taking pictures of bread, somehow this is wrong. (laughs) I can't eat gluten, [Penny] - And you're a gluten free girl. So what am I doing, it's just like envy and longing. (Penny laughs) Bread is good, soup is good. I didn't mean to get you eating, sorry. Okay, so obviously the key pictures here is a scene setter. They don't get a scene setter, which means they have to pull back, and neither of them have pulled back yet, so I'm a little concerned, and I don't know at what point I need to say "Pull back." So they're really tight on the subject, but to me, the first photograph is the scene, because this window bank is amazing. You could probably expose it down a little bit and make a beautiful scene setter. It immediately gives tone, sets the tone of this immediately. I'm kinda just letting them, hopefully discover that, so we'll see. (camera clicks) So remember, you remember your assignment, right? You're doing food portrait. A food beauty and a portrait. You're doing a food beauty and a portrait, that's it. And you're also thinking about a scene setter. Can I get a chair? Something to stand on? (camera clicks) Hey, if John is around, we need a stool or a chair to stand on. Can I see there? I think, yeah that's me. [Penny] - Is that the right exposure? What do you think? I think so. One under, yeah. Two under? Oh, even, okay. [Penny] - Okay, who's got the time for me? [Staff Member] - They've about five more minutes. (camera clicks) [Penny] - You guys need anything from me? Anything? They're completely ignoring me, but that's good. Oh they are, we've got lots of shots of it. So what's the time? [Staff Member] - They have three and a half minutes. (camera clicks) [Shawna] - You guys are doing a great job at not being intimidated by having people stare at you all the time. [Penny] - Alright guys. Alright I'll give you one more shot, go for it Cathleen. No, keep eating, do what you need. [Staff Member] Alright guys, time's up. [Penny] - Okay, alright. You know that wasn't nerveracking at all. [Penny] - Let's look at some pictures. I had a clicker over here. Ah, thank you. So this is your take, and this is your take. Let's just talk about it, alright? I'm gonna have, I'll just drive it. Here we go. Okay, your assignment was portraits, and food. You guys did great. It's hard. My back is hurting already, it's a much heavier camera than I'm used to. Yeah, it's a beautiful, I'm also using a camera I don't usually use. That's okay. I'll give you a break. No excuses. I'll give you a break. Alright, here we go, I'm gonna go with Cathleen first. So, nice portrait of Shawna. [Cathleen] - I thought the color was nice, of their shirt. [Penny] - That's a nice action, let's see how many, okay. Oh, here we go. Okay, good. What I do like is you're staying with the subject, and that's good, I'll give you points for that. She was eating, sorry about that, I was really trying not to, and I swear I thought you were done chewing, and then you started chewing again, so sorry, but you're a beautiful girl, I just, you know. That's okay, just be aware of that. Just, keeping it clean. Nice picture. [Cathleen] - I think I took that from the wrong angle. I think the light was better on the other side. [Penny] - Good. Okay, so immediately, that side of the wall? Bad, because that is distracting. I felt like this bank is where you should've worked, but you have this background to work with, too, which is hard. Just keep that in mind, but that's a nice moment. Man, that's a beautiful table. [Cathleen] - Yeah. And it is true, I did shoot against the window, which, I think you're right, I think that was the wrong place. [Penny] - That works, see how that works? And I stuck with her because I loved her hair, and the color of the flowers. Sorry I got a few pictures of you eating, but I knew she looked like she was gonna smile, She seems like a happy person, so I stuck on her. [Penny] - Well it's good that you stayed with one subject, I commend you on that. Unfortunately that bowl is just right in front of her. [Cathleen] - It's too distracting, yeah. I thought he would be staying down a little bit further. [Penny] - Is that it for this take? [Staff Member] - (Inaudible) Oh, okay. I did have some other pictures. That's okay. Alright, well we can get the idea of what you did, pretty much. What I loved is that you stayed with your subject for a little longer than normal. You centered and you worked it. You homed in on, you thought about a portrait, and you thought about the food, so good, you did good. (both laugh) I'm not gonna be mean, guys, I'm not. I'm not, I'm a nice person. I know you were working with a camera that you've never worked with before, I know Shawna was too, and this is your first time to ever shoot this kind of environment, you're taking a big leap, and that's what I wanna just commend you on. Alright, so Shawna's. Her first take, portrait and food. Okay, that's nice, you're starting to get in there slowly. It's your first food, so I'm looking at your solid frames, so this is one picture, two picture, three picture, four picture, five picture. So you're moving pretty quick through your subjects, you know that, right? [Shawna] - Yeah, I slowed down as I got on. [Penny] - Okay. You're anxious, that's okay. [Shawna] - (Laughs) The camera was too heavy. (both laugh) [Penny] - This is nice, this is really nice, but you moved on pretty quick, let's see. Yeah, you're moving on really quick, so just stay a little longer with your subjects. There might not have been more of a picture there, but it's worth checking out. And then also, this is so beautiful, I would've considered it from other angles, too, just to check it out. I'm used to being able to check my exposure, but when you're tethered, you can't, so I'm like (yells) [Penny] - That's a nice moment. [Shawna] - I like that one. [Penny] - Okay, so you went from here, right? [Shawna] - I like the radish shot though. [Penny] - So you're quick firing, and not staying with the scene long enough. [Penny] - So you know that. [Shawna] - Yeah. [Penny] - But there was a picture here, maybe, and I wanted to just change perspective, you know, like they say in Spanish, con calma. (Shawna laughs) You know, take it slow, this is a beautiful table, these guys are chilling, so I don't think there's any reason to rush. You're good, you're good. Yeah, I think the key is just staying with the moment a little longer, and just slow down. That's my best advice for you. Good job. Thank you. Thanks for putting up with it. (Laughs) Not a problem. Alright, let's go to the next two shooters. [Staff Member] - So it's gonna be Rodney and Lauren. Okay, Rodney and Lauren. Let's see what we have left on the plates to determine what we can eat and photograph. Oh, you haven't got the pasta? Alright, here we go. Who are my two shooters? Who are my two shooters? Who are my two shooters? [Staff Member] - One's there, the other one's getting tethered up. Okay. I can't start both of them yet. So their assignment is, they're gonna shoot. You gotta wait for him to start. You guys hold for just a second, before you start serving, because that's a great shot. [Staff Member] - We can take a question while we're waiting for them. Okay, you guys just hold. If you cannot eat, you can sit, but maybe not eat. I'll take a question from the Internet. [Interviewer] - A lot of bloggers are starting to do cookbooks, what's your thoughts on that? Thanks, for bearing with us, by the way, this is a first for all of us. Penny, while we're waiting for them to get tethered up, a lot of bloggers are beginning to do cookbooks, I wondered if you could get any thoughts on that. Any ideas, or thoughts, or? Well this is the perfect, hopefully they're watching, you can think about how to see food better. So if we really want to talk about this, I think a lot of photographers who shoot food maybe get too close to the subject, so pull away from the subject. I don't think you stay with the subject long enough. Explore the subject. Shoot beyond your cliches, so break passed those photographs that are easy for you. Shoot beyond those and really push yourself to see it differently. I hope that answers that question. Is there another question, or should we continue? [Red Haired Woman] - No, they're all tethered up, let's go. Okay, so your assignment is, you gotta get a sense of place. I'm gonna be really upset if I don't see one. I need a detail, that's an easy shot on this table. I need a detail, and I want a moment. Wow. So the detail's easy. The moment you're gonna have to spend some time working on, and the scene is easy too. Start the timer. No pressure. (Rodney laughs) You can do it. Can I get something to get a little higher, please? Thank you. (faintly speaking) [Penny]- Rodney, you guys need anything? You're good? [Penny] - Your pictures are looking beautiful. I wanna get up really high. (laughs) Maybe we could suspend you by a cable. That would be great. I always wish for that too. Swing me across the table and I'll get kind of a (laughs) Thank you. (camera beeps) That's not working. Okay. Penny, I'm having trouble getting a sense of place. A sense of place? Yeah. Have you pulled back? Have you really pulled back? Not really. [Penny] - Thanks for asking a question. [Rodney] - (laughs) Well, I mean. [Penny] - No, I think it's fine. I mean, the sense of place, the place is ugly. No, but you've got a beautiful scene here, this window is gorgeous with this table. Yeah? That's your sense of place, now you just have to figure out how to make it clean and get a nice shot of it. It's not a difficult shot. I'm not gonna fault you if you have two photographers in it, I think that actually kinda adds to it. That was my problem. So your challenge is just to clean the shot up, find the right perspective and make that picture. Okay. Got it. [Penny] - Time? Last shot. Okay, cool. Here we go. I think we should take their pulse first, and then look at their pictures, and then retake their pulse. (Rodney laughs) I think that'd be really good. I'm already seeing really pretty pictures. Some of them. Some? (laughs) Alright Nico, are you ready to do this? [Nico] - Yeah, which one you wanna do? Let's do the small one first. Who's going first? Who's on the small one? That's mine. Alright, Rodney. Okay, we're gonna just fire through them and I'll tell you to pause when we're ready, and let me just look at your pictures, and then I'll talk to you about them. I just wanna kinda see them and we can... Okay. [Penny] - That's a nice moment. Pause for a second, that's really nice. Okay, keep going. (Rodney laughs) Can you go back one, Nico? There we go, right there. Go forward one, Nico? Okay, you did one frame up there? [Rodney] - Yeah. [Penny] - Okay, you shot one frame. You got up that high and shot one frame? Up high? Can you go back one, Nico? No, I shot more than one. In this sequence though. Could you go back one more? You went from there. Can you go back one more? [Rodney] - I guess I did just shoot one. [Penny] - Okay, that's my point, is that you didn't, you were up there. Even though you were up, you were in a compromised position, you could've worked that a little bit more. Okay, go forward. Just think about that, okay? Just think about that, because it's the same idea. Stop right there. So you shot one frame, that's a great picture. I mean that has the potential to be a great picture. It's not there. [Rodney] - I didn't spend enough time. [Penny] - You didn't explore it enough, you didn't spend enough time. I know that this is stressful, there's a lot of stuff happening. [Rodney] - This is the quickfire challenge. [Penny] - But, you stay in that place a little longer, you took the time to get up on that ladder, give yourself the time to see the picture, okay? Okay Nico, keep going. Keep going. Keep going. Yeah, I'll just let you go through without me having to say. Is that the end? [Rodney] - That's it, that's the last shot. Okay, that's the last shot. Okay, I love the portrait that you got out of those two ladies. Really beautiful. My only advice is just stay with the moment a little longer, put yourself in the right position. I loved the way you were moving around, you just didn't stay there long enough, and just work it. You know that this is what I see in a lot of photographers, is that they don't stay in that place long enough, and just wait for it to happen. I know you were active, and I forgive you for all that, you did a great job. Thank you. You can tell me if it sucked. No, I mean I told you that I thought where you could've worked a little harder, you need to spend more time in the moment, and just waiting for it to happen, but you did get a great moment with those two ladies, I thought that was really nice. Can I get a hug? You totally can. (Rodney laughs) Alright, who's next? Lauren. Okay, you ready Nico? I'm just gonna look at your pictures, and then I'll pause as he's going through. That's obviously a vertical, right? [Lauren] - Yeah. [Penny] - Okay, so already he's got five or six pictures and he stayed with the same subject, so that's great. Keep going. Wait, go back one, that's a really nice picture. It has movement, it's a beautiful food moment. I love all the hands, it kind of says "dinner." So, keep going. It's not exactly the right angle, but I think there is something there. Okay pause. This is an almost, and it doesn't work because of this right here, and I know you were up on a crate, right? So I know you might not have been able to move your body, but it didn't work, and is there another frame after this? You went from that one frame. Can we go back to that frame? And go back one more? This picture was developing, and I saw this head happening a few frames ago, so I would've already started to move. I love the picture before this, with the hands, and so I would've just slowly started to react to the frame, because I knew she was passing, I know she's passing the bread, and I would just think about, anticipate, you're anticipating. Okay, keep going. That's such an almost for me. I just wish you were just slightly over here so you could see just here a little bit more. Finally, someone is photographing this side of the table. Because I think that light is really pretty right there. This is where the light is. That was like one of the first things we talked about. Where is the light? That's where your pictures are. Okay, go ahead. Okay, so you have two obstacles. But she is great. She is great, so you get right in front of her, and you just wait for her to laugh, and you've got a clean shot. Keep going, that's the one. (group laughs) Nice, I love that you got high on this. Keep going. No! You got one shot there? [Lauren] - From that side? [Penny] - No, go back one. That's your only shot? [Lauren] - Yeah, I think so. [Penny] - What? (crowd laughs) You guys see how amazing that picture could've been? Do you see that? Okay, first of all, the light is finally, this is where it's at. This table is gorgeous, Anne rocked it. This is awful, so push your camera down, get the rest of that, and let it fill the frame, that was the first photograph I saw when I walked here. I was like, that's the first picture. I can't believe you only made one frame. (laughs) That's okay, I'm sure the next photographers will make like a bunch. (all laugh) I know, I know you're nervous, but that could've been an amazing picture. Alright, keep going. Okay, at least you're getting on the right side of the table, and that's great, and that's a nice portrait of her, this bowl is a bummer. It's a beautiful bowl, but it's totally in the way, so I know that you're working around that. So that's a vertical, right? [Lauren] - Mhm. [Penny] - Oh, that's right, details. Rodney, did you get any details? [Rodney] - I got a couple. (Penny laughs) Okay, this is nice. This is okay, the other one was your shot. That was like, everybody gasped, I did, and I was like, I know he has it in the next frame, and then, it wasn't there. This is fine, it's not the picture. You know the picture, we all saw the picture. This is acceptable, I think it's totally great. Keep going. And this one you made more than one frame of. [Lauren] - (laughs) Yeah. [Penny] - Okay. [Lauren] - I had the ladder, I didn't have the ladder at first. [Penny] - Well, good job. [Lauren] - Thank you. [Penny] - I hope you learned, so just stay with your moments a little longer. I think you see the pictures. Just stay with it a little longer. I think you're really are starting to see the pictures. Cool. (both laugh) Good job, good job. Okay. (Crowd applauds) You guys are still hungry, right? Oh yeah. Okay, awesome, because we need you to keep eating, and there's the pasta you gotta break into too. That's what we're gonna do next. I'm gonna assign the next two people, and then, are we ready to go to two more photographers? [Staff Member] - Two more. Two more, okay, cool. One more set of two photographers, alright? Are they ready? Okay, so these last two photographers, these last two photographers... On these last two photographers, thank you. (laughs) It's like herding cats. Okay, I'm gonna be honest, you two have the easiest job, Great. Because I've just told you what they didn't do, so you should be able to do it. So you need a scene setter. Obviously you know how to get it. And so your assignment is all of them, all the assignments, because basically you heard the critique, so you should have a portrait, you should have a detail, you should have a moment, and you need a scene setter. In five minutes? I'll give you a couple more minutes. Maybe four. I mean, look, just shoot. Just shoot. I mean you have the answers now, so go do it. You can do it. Do a nice even distribution, wherever-- (group conversation drowns out speaker) Oh that's awesome. (camera clicking) [Penny] - You both know I am here for you if you need anything. After six p.m. I will not answer your phone calls anymore. So if you need me for a question right now, you ask me, I'm here. Thank god they didn't hear that. (faintly speaking) Alright, you've got three minutes. Be the ball. How's the food? (crowd murmurs) Yeah? Damn, I wish I was sitting down. We're really lucky people. [Penny] - Yeah. (background noise drowns out speaker) [Penny] - I wouldn't be so sure. I'm seeing a nice photograph. Whoa, I'm seeing another nice picture, damn! Darn, sorry. Remember where the light is nice, that's all I'm gonna say. I want one of you to sit at that table, too. Nobody's done that. Nobody's sat at this table. How many pictures did I show you guys where I was right here? I was right here. How many times did I-- Hi. Hi. (all laugh) How many times did I do that? Get in there. You can do this, your pictures will get there. And stay there for a while. Are you shooting one? Do you have a wide? Let me see this. You get in there. I want you to get in there. I want you to wait right there. You wait for a picture. Frame it the way you want it, but... Alright guys, one last frame. You both did really nicely, I can already tell. I'm already proud. Okay, wrapping it up, last shot. Wow, these guys are animals, they won't even put the camera down. (group laughs) No, it's good. I like the drive. I'm a little excited about it, I'm not gonna lie. Alright. (group laughs loudly) Do we have to look at these? Shit. (laughs) You'll be fine. Alright, both of you, my tender hearts, it's gonna be fine, okay? This is about learning and growing, and you can do this. We'll do this together, its not a big deal, these are just pictures, okay? No, I wanna do this. Alright, who's? That's me. Okay Nico we're going on the small monitor first, and let's just go through it, and I'll say, you know the deal. Okay, go back. I love that you got up. I'm proud, you changed your perspective, very good. You made two frames here, so just think about it a little longer, because this is actually really beautiful. This is really pretty. Do you see how nice that is? So just stay with it a little longer, that's great. That's a little off moment, that's okay. Okay stop, go back one. Nice detail. Good job. You're having to react quickly. You got a detail, and it's kind of a food beauty too. Okay, keep going. This is where you got in. Ah, go back. And then you have one more frame, and then you moved. Did you move? Mhm. [Penny] - So you stayed there for three frames? It's hard because you have five minutes. That's okay, you just need one good picture. Just stay there longer. Okay. That is like my best advice for all of you, just stay in the moment longer. Wait for the action to finish. It may not happen, it may. This is actually nice, I think it's definitely a horizontal. I would love to see the space around it. This is a really nice moment, though. Keep going. It's a little sloppy. Go back one. You don't need that information. I know you're shooting fast. Is that it? Okay. Here are my words to you, you're gonna shoot, you're just gonna stay with your subject a little longer. You did great, you changed your perspective, you got up, you got down, you got in there. Just stay a little longer, and think about your composition and your frames, and just try to keep it a little cleaner. Okay. Okay? Good job. Thank you. Can I give you a hug? (laughs) Of course! Good job, good job. We're a loving group. Alright, I expect big things from you. Let's go. It's fine. Ready, Nico? Nice! Go back. Can you go back to the first two? Yeah. There. And that's the only frame, then? Can you go one more? Dang it. Did you have more? Is there anything else from the top? Yeah, okay, you know. [Blonde Woman] - Got it. [Penny] - You know what I'm-- [Blonde Woman] - More frames from the top, more frames. [Penny] - Well just work it a little bit more, and stay with it. I know you guys didn't have much time, that was kind of built by design. That's nice, that's really nice. The plates are empty but you're up there and you're waiting, and you're getting that shot, that's good. Okay, so you did stay up there. There we go, we got a little bit of movement. Just stay with it a little longer. Can you go back two? I know it's kind of distracting, and it's kinda hard. Tell me what you were trying to photograph there. I was trying to get the length of the table, with the people a little out of focus behind it, and the flowers, the ambience of the table. Cool, I think that's a great idea. I think it's a horizontal, and I think... I don't know that that's the right perspective. So you wanted to show the table kind of long, and the size of it, yeah that's not the right perspective. I'm trying to think how I would've done that to show that better. Let's keep going, Nico, and I'm gonna think about it. Maybe you have it. I love that you're working the top of the table so much. That's great. Keep going, good. Go back one. That's really nice. I know the food, at this point, had been worked pretty hard, so it's kind of passed its point, but you got that, it's clean, there's a plate, there's a fork. You're thinking about the shots, and you're trying to make them. At this point, this food had already been eaten, But that's nice. Okay, keep going. I know you were trying to get that motion there. Keep going, Nico. [Blonde Woman] - (laughs) Can you go back? Sorry. (Group laughs) So this didn't happen a long time, right? This was quick motion, and I almost think you wanna show who this is going to, so I feel like you need to be on this side, shooting their faces. To me, this whole thing is a scene. This is about the people, you know? The focus of this, for me, from a photographer's standpoint, and how I would've photographed it, the easy shots would've been, I would've knocked out immediately a detail, immediately a food beauty. Immediately, before they got into it, and then the second thing I would've done was shoot a scene, and then I would've gone into, I would've hunkered down and got a moment, because I know my food, with all these people, was gonna go fast. Okay. And the details on that table were amazing, so those were like diamonds, they were like free gifts, so I think the hardest pictures were getting a moment, and me, I would've just hunkered down, I kind of did that. That would've been where I spent a chunk of my time, is just waiting for these. These guys are friends, I don't know if they know each other, or what, but they come together really naturally. They're great at forgetting that six photographers are here making their picture. So where would you have started, if you would've come into this scene, where would you have started? I mean, I saw you down low, over here. I think the first picture I would've made, because I would've been nervous, and I would've wanted to make sure I had it, I would've got a scene shot immediately, because I don't know how much that would've changed. The second thing is, I would've made a detail, because I know that those are gonna disappear fast. The bread was getting eaten in two. Would you have been particular about which side of the table because of the light? This would've been my side I would've been working the whole time. I would've definitely kept an eye on that side, but I would've stayed focused on this side. Even for the portrait? Yeah, the light is fantastic. I mean you're working with some handicaps right here, you've got this background with all these cables, and then you just try to frame it right and wait. You just need one shot, and the other picture that, to me, was like a make my heart beat really fast photograph, is shooting from above that table. The money shots for me, in this, were an above shot on the table, the ambience shot, and then a moment. Specifically on this side. Those are the pictures that I know I would've nailed. Okay. But you did good. [Blonde Woman] - Thank you. Okay, we're gonna keep going. We talked about that, so we'll keep going. You wanna get in front of the action. That's beautiful, that's really nice. You did a great job there, look at that. That's nice, nice job. And you just wanna make that a clean shot, and I'd get in front of him. [Blonde Woman] - Too much back? [Penny] - Yeah, you wanna be in front of the action. It's a little awkward moment, but you know that. Go ahead, is that it? Okay, you did great. Okay, cool. Can we hug it out? Absolutely. Thank you, Penny. (muffled speaking) Thank you. Thank you, eaters! (group laughs) (all applaud) Seriously, I have worked with a lot of people who eat, (group laughs) and you guys are some of the best. You guys were great at forgetting that we were here, so thank you. Thanks for being such good sports. We had a great time. Awesome. Okay, what are we doing next? [Staff Member] - We're gonna get a couple Q&A while we get them cleared out the way. Okay, Q&A, here? Susan. [Susan] - Alright, Penny, let's ask some questions. [Penny] - Can we go over there and just talk? Because I can't hear you. You can't hear me? Come on in, Penny! Come join us. How's everybody doing, in the chat rooms? We're doing good. They're happy in the chat rooms. Thanks. I'm getting in here. Let's talk. Come on in. The question is, and you can just read it here, "When do you know you have the story, and at what point "do you know you're done, and you can move on?" When do I know when I have the story, and at what point am I done, and I can move on? I usually go into a situation with a story already. Do you know what I mean? Oh, yeah. So I kinda know the story already, or I have an idea of the story. I almost never feel like I'm done, and that's probably a fault. I always feel like I could've done more, (laughs) but at some point, you just have to be like, "Okay, it's time to go." So you never get the ten hero shots and then you know the rest is gravy? You feel relaxed, and then-- No, I definitely feel that moment, where I am like "Okay, I think I got "some shots that work, they are elevated, they feel "like they're definitely moments." I definitely know that, but I hang on, like those guys didn't wanna put their cameras down, that would've been me, but at some point, you're like "Okay, I'm exhausted, "and I gotta stop." You have to cut bait, as they say. Yeah, and not to get technical, because you love those questions, are you looking at the LCD, is that something in your mind, in your eye, that you know you got the shot, or are you looking at your camera? How do you know when you get those shots? Is that just instinct? It's a little of all those. It's instinct, I'm definitely looking at the camera, but I'm trying not to look at the camera while I'm shooting it, I'm just kinda shooting, and then, you can feel when your heart starts to pump and a moment's about to happen. Hopefully all the other functions of your camera are working, your camera's firing correctly. You can tell when you have it, and hopefully, when you do look at the back of the camera, after the action's passed, or if you're fast enough you can look really quick. You have it. Okay, cool. And then you keep shooting just to make sure you have it. So Prototype Imagery wants to know, is it better to be a fly on the wall when shooting a dinner scene, or your personal preference, direct some of the eaters from time to time? Well that's not really my personal preference, I think you should be a fly on the wall, and sometimes you are having to kinda get your hands dirty a little bit, because sometimes, if there's a great portrait, and it's just not happening, you're like "You know what, let me make your portrait," and so you take whatever it is you wanna make their portrait doing, you pull them aside, wherever the light is, and you make a portrait. Remember, you're illustrating a story, and that's fair game. It's a portrait. In this case, I would've just let them eat and do their thing, if one of them had an interesting face, with great character in it, and it lent itself to that, I would've pulled them away and maybe put them with some of the food, I don't know. I'm trying not to be cliche here, but I would've considered maybe doing that, maybe, but that would've been after I made all those pictures that I know instinctually could've been great, and that's the overhead, the scene, the food was beautiful, the details were beautiful, and then you start reaching for those other pictures. Like "Okay, what else do I need to get, and can I get it" "in a different way?" Does that make sense? Yeah, perfect, and the same thing with the chef in the kitchen as well, same type of approach. Totally. Yeah, letting them do their thing, getting the shots that feel natural in that moment, the shots that are kind of like, the ones that are really gonna be great, and then all this changes. Sometimes you walk in, and that moment's not there, and so you just have to wait it out. There's no great way to do this. You just have to develop your instincts, and really get great at just trusting yourself. Every situation's different. There's no right way to do this, there's just how you do it. That's all I can advise at. You know, that's great advice. [Susan] - That's good advice. Oh, you guys ready? Alright, well we're gonna swing back over there. Thank you. Thank you guys. Thanks, you guys.

Class Description

Join award-winning photographer Penny De Los Santos for this 15-hour course. When you think about food photography, it's not just about what's on the plate. It's about everything around it. The details, the scenes, the people, the culture, the history, the geography, and especially the moments. Food connects all of us. Food photography is the crossroad, where culture, food, and people come together.


Supplement this course and master your post-processing skills with classes from the Lightroom and Photoshop tutorials series. 

Reviews

Michelle B
 

Penny is the best with Food photography and at telling a story with pictures. This was the very first class I ever saw on Creative Live and Penny was amazing! Her class is so informative to all the aspects of food photography, from styling, to plating to shooting and lighting. and how to tell a story. What she taught me will never go out of style and will inspire you too. Thank you Penny for this outstanding class!

a Creativelive Student
 

Totally love this course!! What a find especially for the price - such a wealth of information and what a great positive spirit!! Thanks Penny for sharing - keep up the excellent work!

joayne
 

Love, Love, Love Penny. What great energy. I will never look at food the same way. Her story and her vision really touched me. She was so generous in sharing her knowledge in such simple terms. One of my favorite classes!