Comments on first softbox food photo ..

Discussion in 'General Gallery' started by redbourn, Oct 29, 2015.

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  1. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Please be as honest as you want. I'm here to learn and won't have hurt feelings.
    A first test with my new softbox and reflector.
    I have so much to learn about lighting!
    Not really asking about composition but comments are also very welcome.
    The dish was/is white.
    chicken curry with veg-Edit.jpg
    The meal was left-over curry from yesterday and just wanted to experiment with the new equipment.
    Chicken curry with, lentils, mushrooms and broccoli, left over from yesterday.
    All comments and criticism are very welcome, but how is the lighting?
    Angle of light and shadows etc.

    Thank you, Michael


     
  2. dennybeall

    dennybeall No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    There's some light flare from spots on the plate but otherwise looks pretty good. I'd be more concerned about "plating" issues in that the meal looks blah with each item (color) in a little pile. Lighting is important but composition goes hand in hand with lighting.
    Personal opinion only as I'm not a pro food photographer.
     
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  3. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    ^^Agree!^^ The lighting isn't bad; it could use some refinement, but it's not bad. The plating & composition are where this really falls down. Rich, slightly saturated colours are preferred. The muddy grey-brown colour which is the bulk of the plate is unappealing and unattractive IMO.
     
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  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Meat looks cold and gray, broccoli looks pale and unappealing, and the depth of field doesn't quite cover the front of this long, wide pile of food. I think the lighting on this looks very pedestrian...the lighting has no drama. Basically the food is back-lighted and the whole pile is in shadow, which is the problem. The food is being shown back-lighted.

    That F-stoppers article was written by some 20-something guy who tried to reduce one of the most-sophisticated photography specialties down to a one-light from behind formula. I know you're working on a cookbook. Have you read any "real" writings about how food photography is done, and I mean stuff written by **expert professionals**, and not the kids who contribute to F-stoppers?

    You desperately need some fill light kicked back into that pile of cold meat and lentils. You desperately need some serious reflection control tools.
     
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  5. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    <
    Thanks. I was only learning light here and using some left over curry.

    I steamed the broccoli and mushrooms to make them look bright.
     
  6. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I agree about the colors and plating but was just using left over food as a light experiment.

    Thanks for the reply.
     
  7. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Are the light flares a problem. They are so common in food photos. How could I avoid them? Use a non-reflective spray?
     
  8. Dave442

    Dave442 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I like to have the camera on a tripod, not sure if you did use a tripod. This allows a couple things for me, one is to stop down the lens to for the desired DOF and second is if there are flare spots or reflections you can adjust the plate or lighting while the camera stays in the same place.

    It seems a bit dark, the camera meter may be reading the white plate and trying to make it 18% grey so might try a longer exposure to compensate.
     
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  9. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks for the reply.

    I didn't want to make it bright but maybe it should brighter which would only be a couple of clicks away.

    I used a tripod.

    What am I seeing and what are others seeing on the Internet is a major problem.

    I use Spyder hardware so I think that my monitor is set up very well.

    But who else uses calibration?

    Out of interest, how do you calibrate your monitor?

    How does this photo look to you ?

    Shot with light through the window.
     

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  10. Dave442

    Dave442 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    The exposure of the food looks fine to me on this second shot. On the first shot I changed the WB a bit to get a white plate and it looked better to me. As the second shot was natural light, might try using a custom white balance with the softbox (are you mixing with ambient?).
     
  11. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks for so much input.

    My softbox has a daylight bulb and my Nikon was set to bright sunlight which seemed to work best when I did several tests yesterday.

    I didn't bother to close the window because it was near to dusk an there was very little natural light coming in.

    Was that a no no?

    Michael
     
  12. redbourn

    redbourn No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I just checked the calibration of my monitor and it was a little out so I recalibrated it.

    This is how it looks now.

    * Not intended to be a foodie shot but just a lighting test.
    white chicken curry.jpg
     

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