I thought it would be helpful to create a resource page that food bloggers can use to see the products and services that I use with my own blog. This list will be continually evolving as I find different resources that are worth mentioning.
Disclaimer: some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. I use all of the products listed below and recommend them because they are companies that I have found reliable and trustworthy. Please let me know if you have any questions about anything listed below!
I’ve used this camera from the beginning of my site. It’s a beginner camera that I found perfect for food photos. Its price point is accessible so beginners (like me) can learn how to operate a DSLR, learn about its manual settings, and lenses. As the blog grows, I will upgrade this camera to the
It feels strange to put a phone into the repertoire of professional tools we use. But it’s place is certainly well deserved! Most of the travel photos you see on the blog are taken with the Google Pixel or Alicia’s Iphone 7, but the Pixel’s dynamic photo lens was able to capture the subject and blur the background just like a DSLR without the heavy travel requirements. (Its fast aperture and lens correction make for great candid shots)
This is the lens I most use when photographing food. It’s not expensive, though it is worth investing in when starting your blog to capture good photos. A few specifics, it doesn’t zoom in or out, which means you are only shooting at 50mm, which is perfect for still lives and food, as it stays still.
For a more compressed image, with richer backgrounds and a shallower depth of field, I would go with the Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G. At f/1.4 the aperture is open WAY up, allowing more light to go through, which means faster shutter speed, and a more more present focus on the subject. Neither lens, 1.4 or 1.8 are good for long range, or motion photography, but they are very very good at keeping the focus on your dishes and their beautiful textures.
If you are using a Canon Camera body, these are the equivalent lenses:
A future upgrade to my blog will be investing in Nikon AF-S VR Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G lens, based on my research and testing, its a wonderful macro lens to get up close and personal with the food, showing the micro world of food and its textures. Its abstract art meets details that our naked eyes cannot normally see. This is a premium, big boy lens though, most cost around $900 so I recommend it only after you have mastered the other lenses and know how to handle your own camera’s specifics. But if you are serious about food photography, it becomes an essential tool to have.
For the blog I like to use cards that have a high write up speed especially for capturing Video. You never really think about the importance of a good sim card until you push the one you have to its limits. For me, it was when we were doing several dishes in the same photo session and the previous card kept filling up. Since, I invested in a 64 gb SDXC and we could do video takes and food shots in the same session without a problem. Transfering the files to the computer was very fast too.
One of the biggest challenges was traveling for the popups and photographing dishes as I went-wherever I happened to be. As photographers, manipulating light to reveal the subject is the most important part of what we do. This tool helped me get a consistent quality in my photographs when natural light was not available, as it happened to be when it’s too cloudy, or when the only time you have available is at night. It’s been an essential tool when I’m traveling, lightweight, and collapsible, it has helped me keep the quality of the photos high, and continue the publishing schedule regardless of whether natural light is available or not.
Even when natural light is available, it may be too harsh, giving stark shadows and hot spots to the food that you can see on your photos. It needs to be softened, cue: Vellum paper! I bought my first roll in 2016 and still have most of it unused. You put it between the light source and your food and the light becomes softer, softening the shadows and improving the quality of your photos. For my own setup, I tape it to the window I’m using for light, so it’s a cheaper alternative to other commercial applications.
Think about it this way, light comes from one direction, you put your dish and the side facing the camera, the side that is lit from behind, has a really dark shadow in front of it. Reflectors help in manipulating that light to ‘fill’ the dark spots.