Food, Photography and Lifestyle Blog

Shooting Tomatoes and Wine Bottles and Glasses


Yeah so what do I want to tell you here? as I am the one who is learning…..ok, I believe in sharing is learning for all, its how I learn as well, for example my flickr buddies and friends add set up shots to their images, or add descriptions how they achieved the looks, and from examining that, plus trial and error I learn a lot.

 

Set up shot for the Wine Bottle and Glass

Set up shot for the Wine Bottle and Glass

If you want to see this image with detailed explanations of what is what, click here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/marcoveringa/3464990953/

So obviously this first few set of shots was for the wine glass and bottle, but in essence the set up is not much differece, for the Tomato shots, simply remove the flags, add a clear plexi glass suspended over 4 water glasses above the velvet, raise the softboxes to match that est voila you are where my tomatoes were.

In the following shots you can see the very clear difference between having soft-boxes or having soft-boxes and flags, Flags are black pieces of board, that prohibit light spill on something, i.e. the black boards you see blocking part of the light from the soft-boxes. In fact they block 3/4 of the light of the boxes…..almost making them obsolete.

Have a look at them first:

 

Wine glass without the Flags, Pretty good right?

Wine glass without the Flags, Pretty good right?

Now look again:

 

Here same shot but with the softboxes from the back to front flagged for 3/4th!!! who talked about LARGE diffused light sources?

Here same shot but with the softboxes from the back to front flagged for 3/4th!!! who talked about LARGE diffused light sources?

Despite that in the last image the stem of the glass really disappears in the background, its a much better shot and a much crisper look isnt it? BTW I am at a loss as to why I cant get any highlight into the stem……if anyone has any tips, pls let me know!!

Another problem I had was with the Wine Bottle, why oh why when the soft-boxes were even pointing downwards why didnt i get highlights all the way down the bottle…..? they seemed to disappear just midway the bottle. how weird is that, and no I am NOT trying to bounce my lights of the black, light consuming velvet…haha. again if you know why, pls let me know, it will help me improve! here the proof to the pudding, disappearing highlights midway bottle:

 

The Bottle base just dissapears

The Bottle base just dissapears

The following shot perhaps gives more clues as there is a glass in the shot and shows more what going around, but still to me it has no answers:

 

The Glass holds key information to lighting experts, but I cant decipher it!

The Glass holds key information to lighting experts, but I cant decipher it!

Ok down to the Tomatoes of this post now, one of my friends and Colleagues is Angelo Mc Donnell, he is a great Chef, an artist and a serious Competition Chef as well, he brought out this book called “Hot Tomatoes” , its sold at amazon.com : http://www.amazon.com/Hot-Tomatoes-Angelo-McDonnell/dp/9889938715 Now Tomatoes I have a soft heart for, they arent vegetables, they arent fruits, therefore they can be treated with both salt and sugar, if you know what I mean. Add to that the colors and shapes they posses, it just means you have an enormously versatile ingredient. Angelo in his book he really shows he understands this to the point!

Anyway I have tried to shoot his book cover idea, i.e. a “hot” Tomato, or a tomato on fire, as you can see from the amazon.com link above. 

1st Challange: how to light it well

2nd Challange: how to show the flames well

 

Dripping rubbing alcohol (90%) on the tomatoes, but that burns to clean, what to use to burn something and show good flames?

Dripping rubbing alcohol (90%) on the tomatoes, but that burns to clean, what to use to burn something and show good flames?

 

Shooting Tomatoes the regular way, just sprayed wet with good lights and vibrance seems to go me much better off!

Shooting Tomatoes the regular way, just sprayed wet with good lights and vibrance seems to go me much better off!

 

A last but not least shot which was edited to desaturate all, except for 1 Tomato which creates quite a dramatic effect!

A last but not least shot which was edited to desaturate all, except for 1 Tomato which creates quite a dramatic effect!

So you can see I have lots to learn but also do my share of sharing so others can learn from me or my mistakes (mostly)!

I have on purpose not shared lighting settings and positioning as this goes into so much details, and needs so much trial and error, if you are interested in that, visit my flicrk stream which has most those detals on each shot.

Ciao

Marco

Advertisements

9 responses

  1. I’ve always wondered how some people managed to get such amazing shots. Thanks for the info! I think I might have to get myself one of those softboxes.

    April 22, 2009 at 5:26 pm

  2. Good post, we all need this info. Best from Santa barbara, s

    April 22, 2009 at 6:20 pm

  3. Always a delight seeing your pix. I’m just using a 8.1 megapixel digital camera myself. Still haven’t found a nice way to shoot my food especially when dining in restaurants with dim lights. Don’t usually turn out well. Any tips?
    Thks for sharing!

    April 23, 2009 at 2:28 am

  4. cosmopolitanblog

    thanks for your comments!

    Blackswan, very hard to do that in a restaurant setting as a guest, but if its during lunch time,. request a table at the window and use a small reflector handheld to shine some fill.

    On camera flash is very bad for food, so either sticks with snaps, or shoot the food properly and eat cold food……its what I often do as well…..eat cold food i mean 🙂 still learning how to shoot properly.

    April 23, 2009 at 2:38 am

  5. Mmmm…. sounds too technical for a lady. I’m really not good in this that’s why I chose a digital camera. Even with that, pix don’t turn out very nice. Do take a look at my photos when u’ve time & let me know your sense. Appreciate.

    http://luxuryhaven.blogspot.com

    April 23, 2009 at 2:43 am

  6. Great reference! I just received my Lowel lights in the mail…time to put them to use. Thanks for the great tips!

    April 24, 2009 at 1:38 am

  7. cosmopolitanblog

    Hey debi, congratulations! pls do me a favor once tehy are set up take a pic of them together, and let me know where you ordered them and what they cost….i am, also thinking to get some proper lights!

    April 24, 2009 at 2:14 am

  8. He Marco! I’ve been away for a few days so am catching up on the reading now. I really think the second shot of your glass is great. The stem… no idea why that happens the only thing I can think of is that the black might be absorbing too much light down the bottom as there is the largest amount of black velvet and that absorbs more light then the black flags, but that is just based on assumption and the only thing I can think off!

    April 27, 2009 at 1:38 pm

  9. cosmopolitanblog

    Hi Simone, yes saw on yoru flickr stream your on holidays before….did you have a good trip?

    April 28, 2009 at 11:24 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s