I am so grateful to be able to be the food photographer for Rachel Beller’s book Power Spicing. There are so many lovely images in this book its hard to choose. I really love her recipes in this book, they are all very vibrant and beautiful so it made photographing them super easy.
We used all natural light for this book which sometimes proved to be difficult. During the particular time of year we shot the light ended early and days were shot. We started a lot of days super early, but it was worth it!
We shot this all in my studio in downtown LA using mostly my prop collection. The author, Rachel Beller brought some of her own pieces to use in some images, and she also purchased some specialty items we needed. I always love seeing the art direction for a book, and have that inspire new combinations of plates and surfaces in my own studio that I could have never thought of. As a food photographer in Los Angeles, I am constantly trying to find new and beautiful props to add to my collection. Most of the props used in this book are handmade bowls by local ceramicists, and some flatware I purchase from flea markets.
I love using natural light in my food photography, especially for cookbooks. It really makes them come to life, and it feels really human. I think the natural light draws all the images into a common look – and gives everything a sense of humanity and attainability that I think is really important for cookbooks.
For more of my Food Photography check out my portfolio here.
We had Wilmarose Orleans prop styling for this cookbook shoot. We shot everything in my studio in downtown Los Angeles. We had a lot of dishes to get through in a day! Therefore, it was imperative that we stayed organized throughout the whole process – mapping out which recipes were next to each other so we didn’t repeat props or surface. That can quickly make a book feel boring and redundant if you are flipping through the pages.
In addition to being a commercial food photographer in Los Angeles, I also shoot a lot for editorial purposes, as well as for cookbooks.
Lucky for us, all of Mareya’s recipe were really colorful. They were all full of bright colorful vegetables and that always makes such a big difference when it comes to photographing food.
One of the more difficult shots we had to pull off was the fridge shot. It is really hard to shoot in a real refrigerator because you are basically shooting in a box which means the light can only come from one place. The light in that scenario is not that flattering. So I discussed with Wilmarose ways we could make this refrigerator shot work better. We ended up deciding to create floating shelves with a white background so I could light from multiple places. This worked out so perfectly! See the results below:
As a food photographer in Los Angeles, I have my own studio in downtown LA where I shoot a lot of cookbooks. My studio has a lot of props I have collected over the years. These include plates, bowls, utensils, surfaces, flatware and linens. I have quite the collection now! These props are available for all my shoots that take place in studio.