Food Photography Preparation Guide

High-Quality Food Photography

A great food photograph can do a lot of things – it can make a viewer hungry, it can convince a diner to order a dish. But knowing how to get your food photographed to get great results requires specific knowledge of what works best and what looks terrible. I have put together a few things you will need to think about when you get your food photographed if you want results as you see in glossy magazines and websites of your competitors.

Food Photography Preparation Guide For Restaurants and Hotels. How To Prepare My Venue For A Photo Shooting
Food Photography Preparation Guide. Food photography for restaurants and hotels in Bangkok, Thailand.

Preparing Your Table Settings

A well-designed setting can give context and mood to your shot so think about it a little. Do you want to exclude the setting altogether and get an extreme close-up of only the food? Are your dishes matched to the color of the food? Are the surroundings set up to give a balanced composition? Elements that you would usually find in the context of a meal (condiment holders, cutlery, napkins, etc) can be arranged by a stylist to help the composition. Usually, you will want these elements to complement rather than dominate the main subject – the food.

Photography of Green Curry with Chicken at a restaurant in Bangkok, Thailand. Captured by a professional food photographer

Atmosphere & Style

Explain to the photographer what emotions the photos should evoke, what atmosphere they should convey. Should the pictures look minimalist or baroque, luxuriant? What details have to be underlined? What should photographs reflect: an unusual way of serving food, a variety of ingredients, freshness, richness of colors? The style of your establishment will affect the way the products are presented. Dairy products look good in a simple home-style, eco-style is suitable for farm products, cocktails look interesting in the light of neon lamps.

Lifestyle photographer Bangkok, Thailand. Professional lifestyle photography for hotels and restaurants.

Where Will You Use The Photos?

Photos for a restaurant menu or calendar are different from photos for advertising or site design. They differ in composition, mood, aspect ratio, in one word – everything. For different purposes, you will need different types of images: horizontal photos on a white background for the menu, vertical photos in the interior of the restaurant for advertising, square photos for Instagram, lifestyle photos for the magazine. Moreover, for each type of shooting, you need a special entourage, lighting, props.
Food Photography Preparation Guide for restaurants and hotels in Bangkok, Thailand

Think About Colors

Colour is a massive part of good food photography. In a lot of cases, you can add garnishes that contrast the color of the dish which is very effective in adding an element of color in your photographs. Knowledge of the color wheel and which colors contrast well and which colors complement well can serve you very well in food photography.

Food photographer serving for hotels and restaurants in Bangkok

The Food Has To Be Fresh

In photographs, food usually looks best when it is full-bodied (as opposed to “big”). The problem is that often when you take something out of the oven, it usually loses its body in the cool air to a degree. Several photography tricks exist to account for this, but the simple ones are probably the best!

Silver Waves Restaurant at Chatrium Hotel, professional hotel photography service in Bangkok

Preparing Your Restaurant

It will be up to you whether you choose to shoot your restaurant, bar, café, and any other dining facilities you have with people or without. Shooting a full and busy restaurant can be difficult, people are constantly moving in and out of shot, Empty restaurants are certainly easier to set up; take some time to ensure your chairs are neatly aligned.


Frequently Asked Questions

How Is The Process Like?

Step 1: Contact
Just send me an email via the Contact Page of my website or directly via  Email. Or call me via Phone.

Step 2: Prepare the shoot
Clean your home and make it look tidy for the best possible results. To understand what to take into considerations when preparing your property for a photoshoot, please read my little guide on How To Prepare Your Food & Restaurant For A Photo Shooting, please read also my Business Terms

Step 3: The Shooting Day
The shooting duration will be Between 2-6 hours, depending on the size of your property. It is VERY important that ALL team members on your end are informed and prepared for the day of the shoot. Prior to the date of the shoot, we discuss what look you are going for, if you have any particular shots in mind, how many items will be shot, and so on to create an official shot list.

How Long Does A Food Shooting Take?

The number of shots we can capture in a day largely depends on the type and complexity of the food or beverage, and the type and complexity of the shot. I would be happy to discuss your project with you in more detail and get you an estimate.

Can we do our food and beverage shoot at our restaurant?

Depending on the type of shots that you are considering for your project, shooting on location at your restaurant may be a great option. Shooting in your space gives us the opportunity to use your restaurant as a backdrop for your beautiful food which can integrate well with your brand and your space.

Does The Restaurant Need To Be Empty Or Closed?

No, not at all! I am fairly good at working around the surroundings. However, I do recommend having us come in before opening so we can get a head start. All we need is a small area, some good lighting, a few outlets, and a staff member to coordinate with.

How Long Does It Take To Get The Photos Back?

Photos are turned in between 3-10 days after the shoot. Depending on the number of the total images.

Can The Venue Be Shot As Well?

It can be, however, this must be discussed at the beginning of the agreement. This is due to the amount of lighting needed, how big the rooms are, how big the whole venue is etc. I cannot accommodate venue shots without notice as I will not be able to guarantee quality.

What Are Your Terms Of Payment?

The payment can be done directly on the shooting day in cash or bank transfer. Alternatively, the payment can be done after the watermarked low-resolution images are delivered to you for your approval. After your approval of the photos and the shooting fee has been transferred. I will send you the unwatermarked and high-resolution images. For further information about my business terms and conditions, please visit my Photography Terms & Conditions page.

Do You Have Been Vaccinated?

Yes, I am fully vaccinated and will guarantee to follow the common rules of social distancing and health prevention measures to make the shooting safe for me and my clients.

Let's Create Something

I am excited to hear about your project. Just drop me a message via the contact form and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

your trusted source for professional photographic services in Thailand