Posted April 8, 2020

Before You Eat: How to Take Instagram-Worthy Photos of Your Food

Eat + Drink

Ready, set, snap. There’s a beautiful conversation taking place these days on social media. We’re talking gorgeous food and drink photos. If you’ve tried to do it yourself, you know how hard it can be to take good pictures of food. Whether you’re new to ‘gramming or just looking to sharpen your skills, here are five easy tips for shooting like a pro and make your food look great for the ‘gram.

All Over It

At the top of our list is the shot angle, which has a huge impact on how the final image feels. It’s also key for developing your signature style; pros tend to shoot from the same angles over and over, giving their work a sense of familiarity. We’re partial to top-down, 90-degree-angle shots – also known as “flat lays” – and also 45-degree-angle shots taken from further away.

Shoot from above to instantly elevate your food and drink photography. (Photo credit: @travelwithvee)

Make It Personal

Standalone shots of bites and sips always win, but we love seeing a personal element in pictures, too. The easiest way to personalize? Just add your hands. Whether you’re digging in with a fork, holding the stem of a coupe glass, or picking up a taco, adding a human element makes the photo uniquely yours. Want to get your face in there too? Read up on these selfie tips from the pros.

Hands instantly add a personal touch to your photos. (Photo credit: @brendanlowry)

Gather Together

Adding more dishes, drinks, a beautiful table centerpiece, chic linens, or any other tabletop items also builds more intrigue into the images. If you’re having a multi-course meal, try shooting each course while the previous dishes are still on the table to give a sense of progression. Tapas, small plates and other communal meals common when traveling abroad are perfect for grouping the variety of colors and textures automatically makes the picture more fun.

A colorful grouping of food and decor is an insta-classic. (Photo credit: @angelaconners)

Far and Wide

Capturing a beautiful plate or stunning cocktail against the backdrop of its restaurant or bar is one of the best ways to tell a story. The lighting, the ambiance and the décor help give a sense of the whole experience–or, as we call it, that “I-wanna-go-there-now” feeling. If you’re at a restaurant with a cool art wall, don’t forget to get a pic with that too!

Give a sense of place by including a scenic backdrop to your food or cocktail. (Photo credit: @jenuyne)

Partner Up

Once you’ve mastered a few techniques, we recommend doing something counterintuitive: handing your phone or camera over to a friend. Like traveling or trying a new restaurant, getting out of your comfort zone can help you see things with a fresh perspective. Choose a meal or round of drinks for experimenting, and watch your friend’s techniques. Then, raise a glass to your collective efforts.

Be the star of your photo by letting a friend control the clicks. (Photo credit: @herwanderlustdreams)




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