You may remember Miss Poppy Cakes from our website makeover competition a while back. Well, dazzled by her stunning cake photography, we paid her a visit to get some tips, and took photos, of her taking photos…
When Sarah Alwazir moved to London five years ago, she struggled to find a job doing what she did back in Hungary – event management – and ended up working for a number of high-end cafes and restaurants where she developed a bit of a talent for baking.
Her cakes were so good, friends told her she should start selling them. And so she did. Sarah soon went from selling to local cafes and at various food markets in London, to opening her own cafe in Camden this year. Pretty inspiring hey? Check out her Moonfruit website www.misspoppycakes.co.uk
She also taught herself the art of cake photography while she was at it. When we saw her photos we were convinced they were the work of a professional, so we were amazed to hear she’d just picked it up as she went along. “I think everyone can take a good photo. You just need good light and a good lens,” she says. Encouraging!
We paid Sarah a visit to her London home to find out how she does it. And there were cakes e.v.e.r.y.w.h.e.r.e.
Here’s what Sarah said about getting the most out of your cake photos (and other food types/products, of course).
1. Always shoot in natural light
“It’s really important. Without it, it’s just not worth bothering,” she says. “Find a good spot by a window and don’t think too much about it.” The French doors and numerous big windows were big selling points when choosing her flat, she added.
2. Use a good camera, and lens
“I didn’t spend time getting to know my camera, I just went for it.” Sarah uses a Canon 550 with an f/1.4 lens, which she lovingly refers to as her “cake lens”. “Don’t use a tripod. I like to move around and take lots of photos from different angles.”
3. Think about props and styling
“I like to use backgrounds that highlight the textures and colours of the cake. I don’t plan these things, it’s luck really. I use the same props in most pictures. My cakes and my home are kind of the same style,” says Sarah. “I buy a new cake plate almost every week.”
4. Takes lots of shots
Sarah says she normally takes a whopping 50 to 60 photos of each cake…
5. Take those shots from different angles
“Try different things, experiment, it’s good to have lots of different types os shot to choose from,” she adds. Watching Sarah in action, she tried the following to get the right shot…
At the end of a long and educational session, we got to try some of the cakes that had been tempting us from afar. And we can confirm they are indeed pretty spesh, as you can probably tell by the cheese(cake)y grins. Sorry.
So, if you have a food website and your photography leaves a lot to be desired, take note. If this doesn’t inspire you to whip out your camera and shoot some cakes, we give up.
Don’t forget to check out all the other photography tips we’ve been posting this month – all stored here in the photography tag.
Let us know how you get on in the comments. And if you want to build a free site to showcase your images, head to our homepage to find out how.
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