Food Photography on the Quick

I have not photographed food often and certainly do not consider myself a food photographer, a genre that requires considerable skill. However, sometimes I come across a beautiful setting and have the urge to grab my camera before taking a bite. One such occasion was at a bed and breakfast my wife and I visited years ago.

The room for breakfast was filled with natural light, all of it diffused and coming from the patio through floor-to-ceiling windows and doors. The camera I brought on that trip was a full-frame DSLR. I also had with me a 105mm macro lens with vibration reduction, which was fortunate because I would not have bothered with a tripod lest the breakfast get cold. I wanted to take some quick photos and then get on with eating.

All of the photos shown here have relatively narrow areas of focus due the close distance of the food from the camera, the aperture used and the camera being full-frame. The close working distance is a given with food photography but a camera with a smaller sensor would have given a deeper area of focus, provided the camera or the attached lens offered some form of image stabilization. (In the future, if I have a smaller format camera with me, I may try that the next time I see food to photograph.)

Viewing the images at the web masks some of the shallow depth of field and these photos look fine at that size. When viewing them larger, I think the second photo of the fruit works the best. The area of focus is on the lime at the top and is a good focal point for the photo.

Although I am not the most stable photographer when working without a tripod, the vibration reduction in the lens made the photos possible at the settings I used. The last photo, of the main dish for breakfast that day, fared the worst since I used a smaller aperture to get a bit more depth of field and that caused my shutter speed to drop low enough that there is a small amount of motion blur.

All in all, though, I like these photos. The lighting and colors are good and it reminds me of a wonderful trip.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 400, 1/80th second, f/7.1, -1/3 exposure compensation.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 400, 1/80th second, f/7.1, -1/3 exposure compensation.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 400, 1/125th second, f/7.1, -1/3 exposure compensation.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 400, 1/125th second, f/7.1, -1/3 exposure compensation.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 800, 1/80th second, f/9, -1/3 exposure compensation.

105mm f/2.8 macro lens with vibration reduction. ISO 800, 1/80th second, f/9, -1/3 exposure compensation.