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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Photographer as Food Stylist

Here comes another "different" job. This time it was packaging for another one of those clients who is a friend. John brought me this job and wanted the icing to "pop". As soon as I saw the product, I knew that I needed to ask for some product to be sent un-iced. This allowed me to do a few of things better. #1: I was able to sort for the best base product without worrying about the icing, #2: I was able to light the base cake nicely without the icing getting in the way and finally #3: I was able to create my own, better looking icing in the cinnamon and s'more flavors (food styling).
Okay, do you see why you need to know Photoshop? For this shot I needed to light and shoot various base cakes and then light and shoot the different icings. I then (using paths) cut the icing off the one base cake and merged it onto the better lit cakes. I used an eraser with a soft brush to help the icing sit on the base and then added a layer as a separate shadow. The shadow layer related to the base layer via "multiply", and the icing just sat on top normally. So there you go: one day to create and style the icings and then two days to shoot, strip and merge the icing, shadow and base cakes. All that work on each X 20 and you have packaging photography! I was paid well and I worked for a friend. What could be better than that?