Our First Food Photography Class!

Our First Food Photography Class!

Professional photographer Sarah Flotard led our very first food photography class last Saturday morning. Sarah’s images have appeared in The New York Times, The LA Times, Bon Appetit, and other esteemed publications, plus she just shot the photos for Seattle Met magazine’s February cover article on the Asian Dining Boom!

This class was intended for students of all levels of experience. The focus of the class was on how to create compelling food photographs by telling a story. Sarah started class with a slide show of her own photos and regaled us with stories of how to “make do” with what’s around during a photo shoot. At a Chinese restaurant that was part of the Seattle Met magazine shoot, when confronted with nothing to work with but a plain white table, Sarah grabbed a couple of colorful, embroidered chair cushions and placed them under a plate of food; she unfolded a Chinese newspaper; she even used the painted cement floor as a back drop. Sarah’s advice is to find your style and learn how to create a mood.

The first hour of class took place in the Hot Stove Society classroom, then the classmates trooped over to nearby Palace Kitchen to set up and take food photos with iPhones or cameras making use of the natural light coming from the dining room’s big windows.

We set out an array of breakfast foods and an array of all the elements (chips, roast pork, pickled onions, cheese) of Cantina Lena nachos, plus we had a table piled with props (linens, dishes, wooden boards, metal pans, mason jars, flatware). These highly motivated photography students didn’t have to be asked twice to get started! Everyone dived right in to gather up whatever sparked their imaginations. While staging their photos, they covered every available surface of the front dining room including the floor!

Sarah is putting together a slide show of everyone’s “best of” photos. We can’t wait to see the results of all the effort, imagination, and enthusiasm that poured forth during this class, and we hope Sarah will be back to the Hot Stove Society soon to teach another class.