A picture can tell more than 1000-words, and in today’s photo-centric digital world, where daily over 95 million photos are uploaded on Instagram only, the value of a great image shouldn’t be underestimated. Especially if you’re operating in the restaurant industry, learning the art of food photography is key to creating a strong online presence. High quality, intriguing, and delicious photos will increase engagement on your social media platforms, attracting customers to your restaurant, and enhance profitability.
Engagement can be achieved when high-quality photos are combined with text that brings value to the viewer. Posts with photos gather better engagement than posts without pictures. More importantly, photos speak about your brand irrespective of the location as they are not limited by language, so anyone in the world can engage with your restaurant’s pictures on social media as well as your website.
You can quickly master the arts of quality online food photography, and up your restaurant’s game with the following tips and tricks, we’ve listed in our guide below.
Food Photography Tips
When taking photos of your restaurant or your food, it is much better to opt for natural light rather than using flash. Artificial lighting can add unwanted shadows and hues to your photographs, which will be hard to edit out. Also, natural light allows you to capture photos in a much higher quality. To find the perfect spot for photographing, you can move tables and chairs close to the windows to leverage natural lighting.
2. Shoot with a good camera
You don’t always need to buy the most expensive camera out on the market to capture fantastic photos in your restaurant. Using the camera on your iPhone will do wonders if you shoot in natural lighting. However, if you do want to invest in a compact digital camera, a good suggestion would be the Olympus OM-DE-m10 Mark 3, because of its compactness and style.
3. Leverage color scheme
To fully cover the essence of the restaurant, you intend shooting, pick dishes that correlate with the specific restaurant scheme. For instance, dishes within the warmer color range can balance cooler navy blue tones.
Also, you can pick a color scheme in line with the decor. If it is a neutral facility, color pops on your dishes might be significant. If it is all-white, you can choose more vibrant and deeper colors to balance. A fun fact is that using the color red in your photos will actually cause the person viewing the photo to feel more hungry. A great tip for driving more hungry customers to your restaurant!
4. Work in triangles
Triangles make a great compositional tool for grouping together multiple points of a photograph. So to maximize multiple dishes, shoot objects in triangles. Using triangles creates dynamic pictures naturally because triangles have minimum sides to create a complete shape. When objects are grouped in triangles, it helps in creating stability, simplicity, and structure in the photo. It will also achieve a harmonious balance in your restaurant photography.
5. Use hands in the frame
Restaurants symbolize communal eating around a table and portray feelings of intimacy and togetherness. Thus, including the human hand as a core element in your frame creates a feeling of communal dining and adds a human element and emotion to an otherwise static image. You can request your employees to assist while taking photos in your restaurant. For example, you can request they hold a dish, drink from a glass, or act as they’re cutting into a delicious looking meal.
6. Remove unnecessary clutter
Water glasses, salt shakers, menus may not bother us while we eat, but they are misfits in restaurant photography. Ensure you remove them and other objects that are not needed to avoid a messy and cluttered table. Also, the fewer objects are on the table, the more your eye will be attracted to the most important point in the photo – the food.
7. Take a killer table shot
One exciting aspect of restaurant photography is to achieve a quality tablescape shot. You can start by making a triangle with the food dishes, and take note of the surrounding colors that will be in the frame. Try to opt for accessories such as drinks or napkins that complement the food. You can include three hands in the shot to create a triangle and utilize three dishes to set up another triangle. These three triangles will create a balanced tablescape.
8. Create an impressive feed
Make the most out of your shoot, get creative, and take several types of photos from close-up, single-dish photos, and broader table shots. As a restaurant manager, you want to generate the best photos that can be utilized in several ways, from posting them onto your socials, creating ads, to creating an appealing website. With your style of photos (photography style, color scheme, or editing), you can create a unique feed on Instagram, for example, that sets you apart from competitors. A cohesive Instagram feed is a sure-fire way to attract new followers and, thus, customers.
Above all, have fun while you take pictures. If you are not under pressure, but enjoying the adventure, it will show in the photos. Adding images into your posts is a great way to connect with customers and social media fans. With the tips shared in this article and constant practice, you will be on your way to creating enticing and inviting content for your restaurant on social media.