Monday, May 11, 2009

The Invention of the Light Box

Tastespotting as I call it, is food porn, and I have photo envy. They are the most beautiful pictures of food I have ever seen. These shots rival those in cookbooks, and they are taken by home chefs. Even things I have never really liked, or don't want to eat like pate or mountain oysters make my mouth water with desire. Those who can compose these gorgeous pictures make me jealous. I read and read trying to figure out how to improve my shots. I've got a point and shoot digital camera, no external flash, no tripod, no fancy schmancy equipment. I kept reading about a wondrous invention called a Light Box. I read instructions for creating such an invention on Strobist. I still don't have any other photography equipment. I'm not exactly sure what to set the food on in the box. I don't want my posterboard to get all stained up and such.

As you can see, my light box is a hearty improvement to my "photo studio" in the top picture. My previous studio was that leather Ikea bar stool in front of the window, Period. That was it. The sweet black background I've gotten on cupcake shots is really just the brown leather Ikea stool. What you can't see is my random assortment of gardening supplies underneath- the mini greenhouse thing, some seeds, bulbs and a watering can. My space is truly a catch-all.

So here's my first photo box photo, sans white posterboard. I just wanted to try out the lighting effect to see how it would work out. Nothing amazing. What is amazing is that I bought that Julia Child cookbook at my little brothers school fair for $1. What a steal.

Then the strawberry, my first REAL light box photo with natural light and white posterboard. I like the effect. I think its pretty. It's almost too nice, you can see all the blemishes on my poor strawberry model.
In conclusion, I encourage all to make a light box. Once I figure out exactly how to use it I think it will be a pretty neat way to filter the light better. Previously I had underexposed or overexposed pictures from the bright sunlight. Now I can get a nice glow without bleaching out the shot! I'm definitely on my way to food porn worth photos.

1 comment:

Jane said...

Hi! I just love your strawberry picture--it makes me drool!
I just finished a light box myself, made of three white foam core boards with a fourth for the top if I need it, and two clamp-on lights. I found the directions on someone's blog so I'm experimenting a lot too, and learning a ton of things about what was wrong with my previous pics! Good luck with yours!