Quick food photography lighting tip from our group coaching call!

Oct 15 • 2021

Hope your week is going well! As you may know, lately I’ve been hosting live group coaching calls for some of our new Foodtography School students (um, SO FUN). However, last week on the call, one thing kept coming up over and over again and I realized I just *had* to pop in to share a quick food photography lighting tip with you…

The assignment for the group coaching call was for the students to show me their food photography setup. And the one thing I kept seeing over and over again?

Students were shooting below their window/light source. It looked kind of like this:

food photography lighting mistake: surface is below window frame

You may be wondering “so what?” Well, this is actually a critical error when shooting food photography. Shooting below your light source means you’re actually blocking your scene from that light. Instead, you always want your horizontal surface to be at least at the same height as your light source.

That’s because light streams linearly through windows. As in, it isn’t able to make a sharp turn down a wall to give you a bunch of light.

If you want to maximize the light coming through your window, you always want to make sure your shooting surface is no farther down than the base of your light source.

So next time you go to shoot some pumpkin bread or caramel apples (Halloween is just around the corner!!), make sure to check the height of your shooting surface. I bet you’ll find that the light becomes stronger and distributes more evenly as soon as you pull that surface up. 🙂