I’m back, but…
…not really. Let me explain. Information is currently spinning in my head, and here’s why: I’ve had a great and busy vacation, and now there’s lots to process, which will take time.
My first week was spent at a food photography workshop in Charleston, South Carolina (I was gone before the storm hit). Although before the workshop I would never have claimed to love my own food pics, I was at least content. However, I felt I was stuck in a rut regarding food styling, prop styling, as well as trying out new perspectives. I knew I wanted to do something differently but couldn’t define what. So, of course, I went to the workshop thinking I’d be so inspired and learn new things that I’d walk out of there being the perfect food photographer. Yeah, I know… a bit over the top, isn’t it?
I shared a beach house with eleven other participants, a great food photographer, a fun and knowledge sharing chef, and a gem of an assistant, and I met great people whom I got along with right away. If the workshop was great, the people made it fantastic. The chef would cook lunch and dinner for us, each time teaching a specific cooking technique. Then the photographer would set photo challenges, and off we went to pick the right props and try to do our best. Oh, and the props… People, I’m telling you – it was prop heaven!
The picture below was the result of the following challenge: we each had to draw a piece of paper from a jar on which we found our personal challenge – mine read “purposely messy, pattern, leading lines”. Funnily, I had just admitted earlier that day that I have never paid attention to leading lines. Then we all had to – without looking – grab a can of soup from a bag that we needed to photograph for this challenge. My soup was chicken & sausage gumbo, and I can tell you it was something I would never willingly cook nor eat; luckily I didn’t have to.
When I said earlier that I was back but not really, what I was trying to avoid saying was that I don’t feel like food blogging any time soon. During the workshop I was actually thinking I’m going to step back from this blogging thing for a good while. At one of the theory sessions, the photographer mentioned four things you shouldn’t do in food photography, and my last post flashed through my head. I had done them. All four things… in one post…
When I came home earlier this week I took a good look at the documentation we received at the workshop, then I looked at my posts from the last six months. I realised it wasn’t as terrible as I’d felt it was during the workshop [and BTW – I am NOT fishing for compliments here, OK!!], but I do have a lot to (mentally) digest and do a ton of practicing to get what I’ve learned into a good picture.
So, apart from a few Food Photo Day posts I’ve prepared, I won’t be posting new things for a bit.
I’m looking forward, though, to coming back inspired and revived!
I’ve received a few comments on this, and I think I need to clarify something. I LOVED this workshop and would do it again as well as recommend it. By no means were we told we were doing anything wrong or making mistakes – we were taught to train our eye on certain details, especially ones that would be noticed by professionals because some people attending the workshop were actually interested in a career in photography or were already working in the food industry.
When I said I wasn’t content with the outcome of my pictures, in no way did that reflect on the workshop. I have (too) high expectations of myself which is why I felt I didn’t get some things right straight away. As a food blogger, you are chef, food stylist, prop stylist, and photographer all in one – and I want to be good at all of them. We have been given great impulses, guidelines and tools at the workshop, and I intend to make the most of them to get my pictures to look the best I can. I’ll be enjoying putting what I’ve learned into practice, and I will be doing that instead of blogging for a while 🙂 .