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Thread: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

  1. #1

    Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Here's an idea that I've had percolating but hasn't quite turned out like I'd like it to. It's a Martha Stewart brown sugar angel food cake.

    Food photography is hard! It has to look super natural and the light needs to be very smooth and....it's usually backlit - I love that it's, sometimes, back lit - or side light. Also, it's often high key. Any insight on this would be helpful. I find that I need to bake another cake (this one has been devoured) and to try again - better armed, hopefully, this time!

    Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    P.S. I did you use my star wars deflector shield to bounce light back onto the front of it.

  2. #2

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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Hi Katy, I can't really comment on how to improve the shot, but I am curious as to whether you eat the pansies and why are the eggs there?

    Wendy

  3. #3

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by ScoutR View Post
    Hi Katy, I can't really comment on how to improve the shot, but I am curious as to whether you eat the pansies and why are the eggs there?

    Wendy
    I can't eat the pansies - I get really emotional. (Tired, late at night, LOL at myself. oh, my....) I eat nasturtiums, though - peppery.

    The eggs,...yes,... well, the cake is mainly made from egg whites and brown sugar. I have another idea (if I can find what I need) to put the eggs in. It's the 'farmfresh' feel-and-appeal thingamajig.

    Wendy, many times I've appreciated that you're up when I am!

  4. #4
    rob marshall

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Noelle View Post
    I find that I need to bake another cake (this one has been devoured)...
    Katy

    I'm back from North Wales, and after all that hill-climbing I was looking forward to a big slice of cake!

    I think this doesn't quite works as a shot. There are three elements at the front (eggs, fork, and cake serving) which could make a good shot. But then the cake behind seems to split the shot vertically into two. Also, I'm not too sure about the focus. A lot of professional food shots use a shallow DOF and zoom in a bit closer so the fade-off in focus is much more pronounced. Looking at the rear fruits of the cake they look out of focus, but not very much, and that doesn't really help the viewer to zone in on a particular area.

    bet you wish I'd stayed in N. Wales!

  5. #5
    ktuli's Avatar
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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Katy,

    I disagree with Rob completely... I think the shot works very well (do I get my slice of cake now or do I have to keep working for it? hehe)

    No, seriously though... If you remember the link posted in this thread... "Food Porn" as they call it clocks in at #10 on the list of over-used photography techniques. That whole "get in close and use a shallow DoF" that Rob is asking for is exactly the stuff that is over-done like Aunt Betsy's Sahara Dry Thanksgiving Turkey! Having agreed with that item on that list, I personally think it is refreshing to see a food shot that has everything in clarity. Granted you did still have some elements of the "food porn" style (slight over-exposure, semi-random embellishments, etc) I think some of those things are just fine in food photography... just the same as everyone goes for reflections in their car photos!

    Keep 'em coming... and let me know when my slice of cake is ready!

    - Bill

  6. #6

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by rob marshall View Post
    Katy

    I'm back from North Wales, and after all that hill-climbing I was looking forward to a big slice of cake!

    I think this doesn't quite works as a shot. There are three elements at the front (eggs, fork, and cake serving) which could make a good shot. But then the cake behind seems to split the shot vertically into two. Also, I'm not too sure about the focus. A lot of professional food shots use a shallow DOF and zoom in a bit closer so the fade-off in focus is much more pronounced. Looking at the rear fruits of the cake they look out of focus, but not very much, and that doesn't really help the viewer to zone in on a particular area.

    bet you wish I'd stayed in N. Wales!
    No, no, noooooo! I'm glad that you're back - even for a second! Your comments make sense to me and are really helpful! I was looking at a Williams Sonoma cookbook on dinner parties and it was weird how most of the shot was just an oof impression - full of light and, sometimes, I wasn't sure why they had focussed on what they had but, I think that the light carried the "point" of the glasses and the general sweep of the table, etc. Of course, it was gracious and completely purposeful and totally worked but I couldn't quite understand it all.

    Anyhoo,...typing sans coffee, in the morning, again. Silly me!
    Last edited by Katy Noelle; 15th July 2011 at 11:53 AM.

  7. #7

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by ktuli View Post
    Katy,

    I disagree with Rob completely... I think the shot works very well (do I get my slice of cake now or do I have to keep working for it? hehe)

    No, seriously though... If you remember the link posted in this thread... "Food Porn" as they call it clocks in at #10 on the list of over-used photography techniques. That whole "get in close and use a shallow DoF" that Rob is asking for is exactly the stuff that is over-done like Aunt Betsy's Sahara Dry Thanksgiving Turkey! Having agreed with that item on that list, I personally think it is refreshing to see a food shot that has everything in clarity. Granted you did still have some elements of the "food porn" style (slight over-exposure, semi-random embellishments, etc) I think some of those things are just fine in food photography... just the same as everyone goes for reflections in their car photos!

    Keep 'em coming... and let me know when my slice of cake is ready!

    - Bill
    Thanks, Bill! sigh. Note to self: add cake to menu for CiC gathering...

    Hmmm, alright, Bill, you've brought up some really good points, here. Thank you! I know the link and the discussion and the thought - it's been in the back of my mind, a little. May I confess that I really, actually, want to follow the flow on food photography and be just like those other popular food photographers? It's my secret and it's out, now. (well, one of them....) They're style isn't stale or over done, in my mind's eye. I have a keen admiration of how they work it all out and I have a little fire, inside of me, wanting to be able to manage light like they do.

    I'm absolutely happy to share a slice with you, especially, because it seems that I may have to make many of these silly things to get it all right. (It's kind of like when I perfected the scone recipe. Every batch that I made left me with 24 scones. What do you do with them all when you're making batch after batch after batch....???) Of course, now, I have three little boys who are like Hoover vacuums!

    I really need coffee.....

  8. #8

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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Noelle View Post
    I can't eat the pansies - I get really emotional. (Tired, late at night, LOL at myself. oh, my....) I eat nasturtiums, though - peppery.

    The eggs,...yes,... well, the cake is mainly made from egg whites and brown sugar. I have another idea (if I can find what I need) to put the eggs in. It's the 'farmfresh' feel-and-appeal thingamajig.

    Wendy, many times I've appreciated that you're up when I am!
    LOL, yes I've noticed that we keep strange hours. Late night is the only time I get to be by myself, so if I can stay awake I do.

    I'm looking forward to your new idea. The cake looks yummy, but the eggs for sure look out of place in this shot of a cake waiting to be "devoured" not sure if devoured is the right word though, this cake looks like it would be eaten by high class ladies at tea extending pinky fingers and all. It has a Victorian look to me, but anyway back to the eggs. You like your pictures to tell a story, and the story I get with this is broken eggs all over the floor. That's how it would work in my uncivilized world. The eggs just would not be sitting there with a piece of cake ready to eat. It makes a nice picture, but does not tell the story for me. Now if the eggs were in the background with say a recipe book and other ingredients then it would make sense. Perhaps something like that with the cake in focus and the ingredients OOF or the other way around. Of course if it was my kitchen and me baking it would be a bloody mess in the background with eggshells and empty measuring cups strewn all over, the floury counter top, but I'm sure that would not make a good magazine picture. See, I should have gone to bed earlier, now I'm rambling. I understand what you are doing and I look forward to the next versions. I will tell you this that photos in food and housekeeping magazines usually make me laugh, because I do not know anyone who lives or cooks or bakes or ends up with the results that they show in the magazines, however that being said, I have a tendency to try the same thing with florals so who am I to criticize, I'm always trying to make the flowers something that they are not.

    Well, I don't know if you know what I am getting at, but I think from what you have said you find the magazine shots a bit disingenuous too, so I look forward to seeing your unique and fresh approach to the subject.

    Wendy

  9. #9

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Just a quick reply, Wendy (I hope I'll get back, later.) My mom inherited a lovely cabinet full of different kinds of dishes - then she built up the collection. When I was growing up, she and her best friend would put on specially themed dinners that were several courses long. (Hawaiian and roast pig, goose with all the trimmings, etc.) I got into setting special tables for it all - I had a lot of different ways to decorate them. After a couple of years of this, for Christmas, my parents bought me a (first edition book) from this lady who was a caterer and hostess extraordinaire - her name (barely known, then) was Martha Stewart. She was kind of like me. (yes, I said that VERY drily.) So, I grew up with this experience and desire to feather the nest, make things beautiful and to be hospitable. Here is a link to a blog post from my mother's day dinner, a year and a half ago. The photos were taken with a dying point and shoot and I didn't know what I was doing, etc, etc, but it definitely gives the idea.

    Then, I have a best friend in CA who would never use fancy dishes - very earthy - she has a tremendous gift for hospitality. I'm always refreshed and invigorated after visiting her - both are real!

  10. #10
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Quote Originally Posted by Katy Noelle View Post
    It's a Martha Stewart brown sugar angel food cake.
    Yes, that's what I thought when I saw the picture!

    Like our-returned-from-the-hills colleague said above, it feels like two pictures - A cake on a stand and then a slice of cake, the slicer and two eggs. Both parts are, I think very good, but I don't think they sit together. Anyway, the discussion seems to have moved on from that.

    I want cake ........ and scones.

  11. #11
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    I see you sliced your bit on the blue plate, but left mine on the stand. I can put up with that though.

  12. #12
    wilgk's Avatar
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    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Knowing as we do, how challenged I am in the whole culinary area..... Best I keep silent... I may laugh out loud in my head though with Steve's reply....
    .... You never heard a thing

  13. #13

    Re: Fourteen farm fresh egg whites at room temperature!

    Donald, Steve, Kay...it's buffet!

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