01 of 06
What to do when it's dark outside?
I always advocate for photographing your dishes in diffused natural light. It simply is the most flattering, appealing, and cheapest light for food photography. But—what’s a girl going to do when it is dark outside? Resist the urge to use your on-camera or, even worse, your phone’s flash. Your food will look flat and unappetizing, I guarantee. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on a fancy light kit either. You just need to know how to manipulate and diffuse the light you can afford. Here... are 5 lighting setups, from hack to pro, that will make your dinner photos look like you took them at noon.Continue to 2 of 6 below.
02 of 06
Construction Light Hack
You probably already have a construction light or other clamp light in your garage or basement. Make sure to use a daylight balanced fluorescent light bulb with it. The other ingredient you need is heat-resistant translucent paper. I found that white backing paper works quite well. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to hack your construction lights.Continue to 3 of 6 below.
03 of 06
Fluorescent Light Bulbs
Fluorescent light bulbs have come a long way in recent years. Kinoflo bulbs are reliable and daylight balanced lights that work well for food photography. Lowel makes a wonderful Ego Lighting Kit that includes diffusion screens and background papers. I think that this is an easy to use and affordable light setup for any food blogger or amateur photographer.Continue to 4 of 6 below.
04 of 06
Fluorescent Light Tubes
Hearing the words fluorescent tubes might make you shiver, but we are not talking about the greenish flickering light in your gym’s changing room. Daylight balanced Kinoflo fluorescent bulbs are my favorite artificial lights for food photography. Here is how to setup your fluorescent lights.Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06
Off Camera Speed Lights
There might be a little speedlight in your camera bag, waiting to be discovered. Most people don’t know how to use their off-camera flash. They try it a few times, with mostly horrible results and then toss it in their bag. Yes, it does take some practice and you have to get out of auto mode, but speedlights are powerful tools that can create beautiful light. As with all the other lights, do make sure you diffuse. Here is how you set-up your speedlight.Continue to 6 of 6 below.
06 of 06
This is where you can spend real money! Professional lighting equipment is very pricey, but, oh the light they produce is stunning. Your first decision will be whether you want to work with flash or continuous light. Both have their unique advantages and disadvantages. There are plenty of brands to drool over. Learn more about softboxes.