Glutton for punishment
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Old 09-03-2017   #1
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Default Glutton for punishment

This is a Summer salad a scoop of chicken salad atop greens and surrounded with fresh fruit. It looks out of level and attempts to straighten it have been worse so for now I've let it be. It could be better propped I see that now. Using the 20/20 hindsight a bread or crackers may have been a good addition. The restaurant serves this with a choice of dressing but it's served in a cheap plastic souffle cup. The chicken salad doesn't have colors so I'm lost at how to take something with so many textures and great colors and make something prettier.

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Old 09-03-2017   #2
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Almost think this is one where top down shooting is the better idea.....?
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Old 09-03-2017   #3
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Almost think this is one where top down shooting is the better idea.....?
Could well be. Depth-of-Field issues would be lessened and this one doesn't have much height in the build. This is a spot where experience would have been a great asset. I did make a bad attempt at going overhead; however, the light dynamic changed. Instead of the light brushing across the top and coming forward, the light was blasting right into the subject. Reducing the light and stopping down the aperture might correct the exposure value but doesn't squat for the direction and effect.
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Old 09-03-2017   #4
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Top down might work.

But before trying that, I would have gone up just a little bit. Seeing under the plate doesn't add much, so I'd start going up until I'd lose that. Then I'd see if I needed to go higher or not. Total top down is very flattening, so not sure that's the best either. The lighting appears a bit harsh to me. I'd try to soften that a touch. Sometimes using a softer light, but adding small mirrors to add specular highlights where you need them sometimes helps.

It's all a game of playing with things an seeing what works.
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Old 09-03-2017   #5
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Top down might work.

But before trying that, I would have gone up just a little bit. Seeing under the plate doesn't add much, so I'd start going up until I'd lose that. Then I'd see if I needed to go higher or not. Total top down is very flattening, so not sure that's the best either. The lighting appears a bit harsh to me. I'd try to soften that a touch. Sometimes using a softer light, but adding small mirrors to add specular highlights where you need them sometimes helps.

It's all a game of playing with things an seeing what works.
More great input, thank you. I'll make sure to light with multiple schemes. This was illuminated with a medium softbox above and behind with either a 10 grid or a snoot firing across the top and then bouncing off a crinkle silver reflector. I was trying to mix soft light with some hard specular highlights.
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Old 09-03-2017   #6
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Default Re: Glutton for punishment

Great image!

Nice color, clear and looks good enough to eat! :
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Old 09-03-2017   #7
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Great image!

Nice color, clear and looks good enough to eat! :
Thanks Ron,

I've shown photos from this set to non-photographers. The reaction has been along the lines of "This makes me hungry" or "I'd eat that". That is the intended reaction. The photographers (myself included) want to talk about technique and execution to explain how those reactions are gained or how to improve them. At this level and at my current stage of development I'll take a "Looks good enough to eat" as a high compliment.
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Old 09-04-2017   #8
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Thanks Ron,

I've shown photos from this set to non-photographers. The reaction has been along the lines of "This makes me hungry" or "I'd eat that". That is the intended reaction. The photographers (myself included) want to talk about technique and execution to explain how those reactions are gained or how to improve them. At this level and at my current stage of development I'll take a "Looks good enough to eat" as a high compliment.
And that's just how it was intended my friend!
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Old 09-04-2017   #9
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Originally Posted by nu2scene View Post
Top down might work.

But before trying that, I would have gone up just a little bit. Seeing under the plate doesn't add much, so I'd start going up until I'd lose that. Then I'd see if I needed to go higher or not. Total top down is very flattening, so not sure that's the best either. The lighting appears a bit harsh to me. I'd try to soften that a touch. Sometimes using a softer light, but adding small mirrors to add specular highlights where you need them sometimes helps.

It's all a game of playing with things an seeing what works.
All of that.
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Old 09-04-2017   #10
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Default Re: Glutton for punishment

This is a crude eyeball estimate but I'd say your subject is occupying maybe 20% of your frame. As an art director I used to work with would say, "We're not selling [or in this case black] white space."

Raise the camera, move in closer, and lose the napkin and fork, which serve only to lead the eye out of the frame.


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