How to snap the perfect food selfie

A few years ago, choosing a restaurant was simple. But in an age of social media, food is not only to be tasted, it is also there to be seen.

A few years ago, choosing a restaurant was simple. But in an age of social media, food is not only to be tasted, it is also there to be seen.

For many diners now, a meal out cannot start without first taking a photograph of the meal and sharing it on social media. Take a look on your own feeds and you don’t have to scroll far before you’re hit with the culinary delights of your friends’ latest restaurant visits.

It appears that the picture-perfect phenomenon is here to stay, with Brits going to new lengths to get the perfect shot. From checking out a restaurant’s interior to finding the perfect lighting and angle, it’s become a largely accepted part of dining out as Brits compete for bragging rights online.

Creating a perfect culinary picture can take a lot of skill and practise but there are some simple tips and tricks to follow so diners can tuck into their meals whilst it’s still hot.

To help the nation polish their food photography game, we’ve partnered with food influencer Food Feels to produce the ultimate guide to taking restaurant photos. From documenting your arrival to taking photos of the food itself, Food Feels takes diners through a ten-course training guide to making the most of your culinary experience.  

Top 10 Tips for Food Photography

1. The right light

Natural light is key, I always try and shoot food during the day for the best lighting and to bring out the right colour and texture of my subject. Try and stay away from artificial lighting and never use flash with food! A cloudy day is also perfect as direct sunlight can create harsh shadows and lighting.

2. Use props to set the scene

Add some colour or additional elements to the table. This can be anything from a hand to add a human element, part of a menu to add some colour or even a vase and plant on the table.

3. Stand up for a birds eye view

Not everyone likes to do this in a restaurant! See what options you have with different angles (just don’t stand on the chair).

4. Take a step back

Shooting food doesn’t necessarily need to be the one plate of food, have a look around and see if you can incorporate other dishes on the table, or even the background of the restaurant and the table and chair setting to create more of a setting.

5. Perfect a firm grip

If you’re shooting with a camera, you may like to test out some shots with a tripod, especially if you’re shooting from far and if you’re shooting with your phone, always take a few from the same angle just to make sure there is definitely one in focus.

6. Check your background

To create a mood, you may want a lot going on in the background, if you’d like to focus on just the one dish then a plain background will work best.

7. Work the angles

The food isn’t moving anywhere so make sure you’re the one moving around and shooting different angles and options, if there are shadows to play with it’s a great opportunity to work with the lighting.

8. Snap away

Take lots of photos, it’s always better to have options!

9. Don’t be afraid to be messy

Some of the best food shots aren’t very neat, keeping it natural and messy can sometimes work best - running egg yolk, messy cheeseboards and sliced up pancakes will always look great.

10. Find your niche

There are thousands of ways to shoot food - Find a style that works for you and own it.

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