food styling

5 Things I learned about Splash Photography

5 Things I learned about Splash Photography

Five things I leaned about Splash Photography

Read More

Ooh La La, Pretty Pastries in Los Angeles


If you have ever been around me when I suggest places for lunch or it should come as exactly zero surprise I love my local bakery/cafe Gigis’ in Echo Park.

Gigi’s has a glorious assortment of Cuban favorites and Mexican staples (hello potato balls and cheese + guava empanadas…), a really bangin Medianoche sandwich and one of my favorite neighborhood breakfasts (beans + crema + plantains thank you very much) but on this particular day I was in search of a couple of pretty pastries for a portfolio picture (ok alliteration calm down) and knew they would deliver.

As I work on getting up to speed in the food and beverage industry one of the biggest challenges is what to photograph for my portfolio? I am not a baker. This is beyond obvious. I could over-bake air. (Meringue? Impossible! Who do you think I am? A wizard?) So I am relying on some of my favorite neighborhood spots to help a girl out in a pinch. I’m not getting anything by sharing this, just that I hope you all keep supporting your local food spots so they stick around in these messy gentrifying times. ANYWAY, so on this day Gigi’s got called into action in the studio. Here were some of the shots I came up with!

TartA.jpg
FruitTart05.jpg

***That bottle is a several hundred year old ceramic bottle that was literally dug up in England that I picked up on my honeymoon with the Mr who was patient enough to let me talk to a dude at a street market for entirely too long about antique bottles and historical dumping sites….***

FruittartdetailA.jpg
Fruittart04A.jpg
Fruittart09A.JPG
Fruittart06A.JPG

Things I learned

  • Meringue melts really fast and is super easy to mess up even if you are careful

  • It can be fixed in retouching which I did a lot of in these shots

  • Berries in a guava syrup look pretty erotic

  • I’m ok with that

  • Having a brush and tools are very useful for carefully moving accidental crumbs

  • The best part of shooting pastries is sharing those beautiful babies with my studio mates!

Hopefully this inspires you to all go out and grab a snack from a local spot! Until next time,

Happy snacking,

xoxo,

RP

Dried Oranges + Food Styling Adventures


 
StarAniseOrange.jpg
 

We are almost one month into 2019, how is your year going? Over here Los Angeles we have been seeing some uncharacteristically cold and rainy days that serve to remind everyone in Southern California that, yeah, regrettably it’s still winter (at least for a couple more weeks)! Since no one in LA likes to go outside in the rain (or mild cold) I’ve been channeling some indoor, wintery vibes for some cozy beverage shots to up my styling game.

Food styling experiment: Dried Oranges

As I explore the transition into editorial and commercial food photography I find myself experimenting with as many new aspects of the industry as I can manage. Since I am not as culinarily gifted as many of the chefs or bloggers turned photographers I’ve been mostly teaming with awesome cooks or snagging some special treats to play with that were not contaminated by my terrible cooking. The one area I usually can be counted on though is styling, but what would happen if I combined styling elements with actually TURNING ON THE OVEN? I wasn’t sure either but all I knew was I had been seeing some beautiful shots with dried orange slices and I was in the know on where to get some oranges so it was worth a try…

DriedOranges18.JPG
DriedOranges14.JPG

The mission was simple, slice some oranges, put them on a bakers rack and toast them up low and slow over the course of a day. Since I had a full day of photos to edit and no place to go I figured it was my moment. These little guys went into the oven at 200 degrees F for their super long sauna.

DriedOranges12.JPG

Midway through

DriedOranges20.JPG

This was about 3 hours into the process- the orange peels were dried out and solid but the pulpy bits were still loads too sticky. Back in they went

7 hours Mark

After about 4 hours I started setting the timer for 45 min and gave these bad boys a peek to see if they had exploded or anything horrible, or if we were still smooth sailing. At about 7 hours in I decided they weren’t getting any drier and we had done the damn thing. Since it was such a low temp they were able to be handled right away and not too hot to the touch but I left them on the rack to cool down for the night before packing them away to take to the studio for the shot.

Orange04_1.JPG

I really love how the blood oranges dried out! I was worried they might loose some of their color but they stayed a nice shade of wine.

Orange07.JPG

After I was done oggling them the next day I loaded them up and brought them to my new studio space to debut in a warm, wintery beverage shot!

The Final Result: Mulled Wine Food and Beverage Photo with Dried Orange and Star Anise

Mulledwine06.JPG
Mulledwine08.JPG
Mulledwine23.JPG

Ta-da! It’s a busy week for me with some exciting beauty + snack shots so that’s it for me but I hope you all enjoyed my baby steps into food styling!

Have a rad week and happy snacking!

xoxo,

RP