Must-Have Photography Props For Food Bloggers

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Don't know what type of props you need for your food blog? Whether you're building a prop collection or looking to add new items, we've compiled a list of the most efficient and versatile props every food blogger should have.

How To Choose Food Photography Props

As you go through our guide, keep in mind that the best dinnerware, serveware, and glassware should be neutral-colored and non-reflective because they are easier to photograph. Neutral colors will practically go unnoticed by your audience and will suit any color palette, enabling you to use the same props repeatedly. Since lighting for food photography can be tricky, you should also seek props with a dull finish to reduce reflective light and make it easier to photograph and edit your pictures.

1. Plates & Bowls

Pairing your fare with intricately patterned blue china plates or multicolored porcelain bowls might be tempting. After all, they are eye-catching and photograph well, but you'll soon find that beautifully designed tableware can end up hurting your photographs rather than helping. Plates with strong colors and patterns can distract from your food and may result in followers asking where the plates are from rather than asking about your culinary creations.

Melamine plates and bowls with a matte finish are perfect for plating your dishes. Unlike other plastic dishware, melamine plates are virtually unbreakable and give off the appearance of being made out of porcelain or slate. Your subscribers won't be able to tell the difference! In addition to their high-grade look, a matte finish will prevent uneven lighting, so you'll spend less time correcting photos during post-production.

2. Cutting Boards

Looking to make a dish that stands out from the rest? A well-placed cutting board adds layer, height, and texture to your pictures. Use them to stylishly display how you prepare your meals or as plates to enhance your presentations.

Natural wood cutting boards give your pictures character, warmth, and an effortless rustic touch. Most food bloggers pair cutting boards with:

  • Charcuterie
  • Burgers
  • Pasta
  • Wheat dishes
  • Brightly colored fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Spices

Cutting board alternatives are great options if you want something that doesn't look like a cutting board, but has the same effect as a cutting board. You should try:

  • Wood serving trays
  • Stands
  • Displays
  • Acacia risers

A collection of props with various options will give you different shades and textures to create the perfect look.

Marble serving plates and platters are also great if you want to add texture with a more sophisticated and clean feel. Marble serveware is versatile in that it's elegant and can be used every day. You'll be able to plate your food on marble multiple times without your followers even noticing.

3. Cutlery & Utensils

If you want to give your pictures a human touch, add some cutlery or kitchen utensils to your scene. Spoons, forks, and knives help viewers imagine eating the dish, while utensils show how your meal was made. Since most cutlery is reflective, picking the right fork or spatula can be tricky. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can try, such as spraying your stainless steel utensils and cutlery with anti-glare to give them a matte finish.

Melamine tasting spoons are an alternate option to traditional cutlery. With tasting spoons, the food is already in the bowl, making it even easier for your viewers to visualize themselves tasting your delicious treats.

Silicone utensils don't have any glare and are available in a variety of colors. Plus, they can be used to make lines that lead to your dish. They're great tools for creating a story in your photographs or videos.

4. Glassware

You can't go wrong with glassware. Unlike mugs and other non-transparent cups, glassware can be photographed from all angles, allowing you to choose the perfect shot from a large selection of pictures. Plus, clear glass will give your audience a sense of action. Think about it: a glass full of ice cubes stirs your senses with sound, feel, and taste. While a non-transparent cup limits your imagination. Just remember always to use cups and glasses appropriate to the beverage you are photographing or filming. You wouldn't put a martini in a champagne glass, would you?

Etched glasses make beverages look more refreshing, and their etched design shows off the colors of your fruit drinks or margaritas. You'll be able to play more with light and give your drinks more dimension.

Square glass bottles and nostalgic bottles are essential when it comes to bottling up your drinks. You won't always need a tumbler or a wine glass next to your meals. A hot dog will always look better with a bottled soft drink than with a highball glass. Not to mention, these are reusable, and you won't have to worry about concealing expiration dates that are printed on most commercially sold bottles.

Beverage glasses can be used for any drink and paired with any meal. Their simple yet classic design makes them versatile and an essential prop for your collection. Look for glasses with thin walls, as these are less reflective and will show off the dark and light hues of your drinks.

5. Small Plates & Bowls

With mini plates and bowls, you'll be able to create the look of a full plate with less amount of food. Large bowls and plates will require more food, which can be costly and is harder to photograph. Small plates and bowls are easier to style because they require less food and can be placed between larger dishes to create a visual journey.

Small glass bowls and dishes can be used to showcase ingredients, appetizers, desserts, sauces, and more! Like glassware, glass bowls, and dishes have no bad angles. There are many types of small glass dishes and bowls available, such as tasting dishes, tasting bowls, dessert bowls, and prep bowls. Experiment with different bowls for unique shots of your ingredients or tasty meals.

6. Food Wraps

An easy way to create an extra layer in your food photography is with food wraps. You can wrap your sandwiches or burritos, but you can also lay them flat and use their lines to guide your audiences' eyes to dishes or beverages. Plus, food wraps with designs add color and visual interest. Crinkle food wraps to add extra texture. Your followers won't be able to take their eyes off the pictures in your posts!

7. Backdrops and Surfaces

Backdrops and surfaces are essential elements in food photography that set the stage for your culinary creations. A well-chosen backdrop can enhance the mood and ambiance of your images, creating a cohesive and attractive visual narrative. Wood, marble, slate, and various fabrics are popular backdrop choices, offering different textures and tones to suit different styles. A rustic wooden backdrop can add warmth and a natural feel, while a clean marble surface exudes elegance and sophistication. Experiment with various backdrops to find the perfect one that complements your food and enhances the overall appeal of your photographs.

8. Props for Themes and Seasons

Props that align with specific themes and seasons play a pivotal role in creating captivating and relevant food photography. Whether it's showcasing festive dishes during holidays or embracing seasonal ingredients, themed props add context and relevance to your culinary storytelling. For instance, a collection of Halloween-themed props can infuse a sense of spookiness and fun into your dishes during the fall season. Similarly, incorporating floral elements and pastel-colored props can beautifully capture the essence of spring. By having a diverse range of themed props at your disposal, you can craft visually engaging images that resonate with your audience and keep your content fresh and exciting throughout the year.

9. Linens and Napkins

Linens and napkins offer a delightful touch of refinement and style to your food photography. These simple yet effective props can elevate the overall look of your images and tie together the visual aesthetics of your dishes. Consider using linen or cotton tablecloths to create a sense of elegance and add a soft, pleasing backdrop for your food presentations. Patterned napkins can bring a pop of color and personality to the scene, complementing the dish's theme or the overall tone of the photograph. By experimenting with different fabrics and designs, you can discover how linens and napkins can effortlessly transform the atmosphere of your food photography.

10. Food Styling Tools

Food styling tools are invaluable assets for food bloggers seeking to create visually striking and perfectly arranged dishes. These tools enable you to arrange, shape, and manipulate your culinary creations to achieve the desired look and presentation. Precision tweezers are excellent for delicately placing garnishes with finesse, while food brushes come in handy for glazing and adding shine to your dishes. Toothpicks allow you to arrange small ingredients meticulously, creating intricate details that catch the eye. With the right food styling tools at your disposal, you can master the art of food presentation, making your dishes visually appealing and enticing to your audience.

The Focus Of Food Blogging Is The Food

No matter what types of dishes or glasses you end up choosing, bear in mind that food props for photography are meant to complement your dishes, not overshadow them. It's easy to get caught up in finding the perfect bowl or spoon, but you should never forget to make your hero, i.e. your food, the star of the show.

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