Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II

Started 5 months ago | Discussions
sam photo
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Re: Concentrate on Setup
In reply to BAK, 5 months ago

...I'm not sure what point you're trying to make here...there are a myriad of options that can be utilized to negate walking back and forth in tethering...if the op finds himself in a shoot with clients and stylists, chances are he will have no choice but to tether since by it's nature it will be a collaborative effort...there are plenty of situations in photography where tethering is not practical/prohibitive but product/food illustration is certainly not one of them...

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smafdy
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to photolando, 5 months ago

I originally got into photography because I found myself doing all of the set-up, and then hiring a photog to set up his lights (to my satisfaction), measure the light, and push his shutter button.

There is nothing secret about shooting food or product photography. Buy a good book on the subject(s), and leverage the experience of others (some of these books even go into depth regarding food substitutes that will maintain the look of fresh food without constantly preparing and re-styling every element in a shot — fake ice cubes and sprayed glycerine on "cold" glasses, for example).

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smafdy
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to BAK, 5 months ago

The easiest way is to NOT cook the turkey, at all. Go over a raw bird with Kitchen Bouquet until the desired color is achieved (no point in burning the drumsticks or cracking/shrinking the skin).

The raw bird is then placed in the setting (wearing gloves, unless you want to get good and sick), and shot.

If you want to show a slice of the bird being carved, you carve the raw meat with a very sharp knife, and "cook" the surface of the visible cut portions with a kitchen torch.

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DCooper
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to smafdy, 5 months ago

Many thanks for all of your fantastic replies.

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Mike_PEAT
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Re: Tethering...
In reply to BAK, 5 months ago

BAK wrote:

Tethering requires a lot of walking back and forth from camera to computer to camera to computer, and it also often draws clients over to the computer where they stand in the way blocking your view, and make suggestions that drive you nuts.

Tethering is, however, handy under lots of circumstances.

As someone who uses it every day for product photography, there's nothing to say you can't have a laptop on wheels so it's right beside your camera.

If you want you can also connect the laptop to a larger monitor for the client to view (if you have that problem).

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Mike_PEAT
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Not a fan of strobes for product photography.
In reply to DCooper, 5 months ago

DCooper wrote:

You guys are absolutely right about the lighting.

This was the first thing I did. I bought some strobes, accessories, and DIY Diffuser panels, did some courses, and studied 'Light, Science and Magic' and learned.

Personally (as a product photographer) I prefer constant lighting, so you can see where the shadows fall BEFORE you take the shot (unless your strobes have modelling lights).

Also (at least with Canon's tethering software) I can simulate the exposure before taking the shot, something that requires experimentation and trial and error with strobes.

The only reason why I would use strobes is IF I was shooting a live person modelling the product and needed to freeze the action.

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BAK
BAK
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Is that legal?
In reply to smafdy, 5 months ago

Curious.

BAK

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Kirk Tuck
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to BAK, 5 months ago

Not if the turkey is the product.

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Austin based advertising and portrait photographer, and author of the book series, Minimalist Lighting, and the books: Commercial Photographers Handbook, Photographic Lighting Equipment, and, LED Lighting for Digital Photographers. www.kirktuck.com

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BrianYarvin
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to BAK, 5 months ago

Curious.

BAK:

I'm no lawyer, but I am a food photographer and I can say that no client I've ever had would accept a turkey prepared that way. Nobody ever mentioned the law, but all expected the food to be cooked exactly as their recipes specified.

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smafdy
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to BrianYarvin, 5 months ago

How many damned turkeys have you shot? How much ice cream? Hot coffee? Fudge? Chocolates? Pizza? Liquid being poured into a glass?

I once had a fudge manufacturer tell me to buy someone else's fudge to shoot, because his looked like sh!t.

We ended up using his, but styling took hours.

If you think every (or any, for that matter) fast food or other promotional shot you see contains the real, prepared as in real life, ingredients, you are mistaken.

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BrianYarvin
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to smafdy, 5 months ago

How many damned turkeys have you shot? How much ice cream? Hot coffee? Fudge? Chocolates? Pizza? Liquid being poured into a glass?

Smafdy:

This is an easy question for you to answer. Go to my website. You can find links to my books, stock collections and tear sheets there. (indeed, linking to my published work is its only purpose) I welcome your visit.

>If you think every (or any, for that matter) fast food or other promotional shot you see >contains the real, prepared as in real life, ingredients, you are mistaken.

What I think and know is that my photos - the ones I take - contain the real thing. When I give my word to agents, editors or publishers, I mean it. If you insist that everybody else is faking it, so be it. No need to quarrel here. I suspect that if we sat down and compared your work to mine, we'd see images for clients with completely different sets of expectations. Indeed, this is a difference worth exploring in a forum like this one.

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ashleymorrison
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to smafdy, 5 months ago

smafdy wrote:

If you think every (or any, for that matter) fast food or other promotional shot you see contains the real, prepared as in real life, ingredients, you are mistaken.

And when the MegaVision S3 came along at the end of 1999, then the fun really began...

Cheers,

Ashley

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TonyGamble
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to DCooper, 5 months ago

DCooper,

Did you take time out to look at a Sigman DP3 Merrill and the URL's I pointed to you?

My suggestion is right at the end of the original thread.

It was made a month ago and I am even more convinced the idea is worth considering - even if those already committed to Canon and Nikon would not want to follow it up.

For those who don't want to bother looking for the old thread I said:-

"A DP3 Merrill which, for any time you need it, has macro. 300 UKP

An Eye-Fi card. Say 70 UKP

A tablet. No more than 100 UKP if you avoid the latest released model

A tripod. Second hand with a ball head? 50UKP

You'll have more pixels than any of the DSLR brigade.

You'll have a natty little display device to let you see what is going on and, more importantly, if you have an Art Director (note the caps) something to hold and make him/her feel needed.

Oh, and a lens hood. 10 UKP. Not needed in the least but it will show you are a Pro."

I use mine every week with an art director and we get the shots she needs. And the definition knocks the socks off anything I achieved in my "mad/bad old days" of DSLR.

Tony

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DCooper
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to TonyGamble, 5 months ago

TonyGamble wrote:

DCooper,

Did you take time out to look at a Sigman DP3 Merrill and the URL's I pointed to you?

My suggestion is right at the end of the original thread.

It was made a month ago and I am even more convinced the idea is worth considering - even if those already committed to Canon and Nikon would not want to follow it up.

For those who don't want to bother looking for the old thread I said:-

"A DP3 Merrill which, for any time you need it, has macro. 300 UKP

An Eye-Fi card. Say 70 UKP

A tablet. No more than 100 UKP if you avoid the latest released model

A tripod. Second hand with a ball head? 50UKP

You'll have more pixels than any of the DSLR brigade.

You'll have a natty little display device to let you see what is going on and, more importantly, if you have an Art Director (note the caps) something to hold and make him/her feel needed.

Oh, and a lens hood. 10 UKP. Not needed in the least but it will show you are a Pro."

I use mine every week with an art director and we get the shots she needs. And the definition knocks the socks off anything I achieved in my "mad/bad old days" of DSLR.

Tony

Thank you Tony, I did research that camera.  It looks like a very capable piece of equipment.  However I was unsure of the ergonomics being suitable for myself.  I have a disability and I prefer the DSLR form.  Do you have any idea if it is compatible with Skyport triggers?

Regards,

D.

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TonyGamble
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Re: Which DSLR for Professional Product and Food Photography - part II
In reply to DCooper, 5 months ago

"Do you have any idea if it is compatible with Skyport triggers?"

Maybe this will tell you.

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3590490

I use a Hoodman Loupe with my DP3M sometimes.

Tony

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smafdy
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to ashleymorrison, 5 months ago

Nice shot. Bet you busted your butt on that.

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Kirk Tuck
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to Kirk Tuck, 5 months ago

For the record there is a lot of stuff people did to food in the past that is no longer legal and the fines from the FCC are very big and the regulations very strict. If the food in question is the product that the consumer is buying it MUST be made from the ingredients and the food products that a consumer COULD find in a real world advertiser's location or restaurant. You might (ANECDOTALLY) know of someone who cut corners or lied by it's not ethical or legal to do so. Even in shooting a McDonald's commercial the stylist looks through hundreds of buns to find the right one without changing it. The meat is the meat. The pickles are the pickles. The ketchup is the ketchup. To substitute anything that the customer cannot buy in one of the locations is against the law.

The food must be cooked as it would be in one of the customer's facilities. Again, adding coloration, bulk or other additives is illegal. The law is very plain and you can research this for yourself.

If a client asked me to use someone else's fudge in an ad for their fudge I would be out the door in a heart beat with my attorney's blessing. It's against the law to do so.

The loophole is that you can do anything you want with the surrounding food as long as it is NOT the product. The thing being advertised.

If we are giving advice here we should let beginners know what the law is. If you want to go rogue that's up to you.

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Austin based advertising and portrait photographer, and author of the book series, Minimalist Lighting, and the books: Commercial Photographers Handbook, Photographic Lighting Equipment, and, LED Lighting for Digital Photographers. www.kirktuck.com

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ashleymorrison
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to Kirk Tuck, 5 months ago

Kirk Tuck wrote:

The food must be cooked as it would be in one of the customer's facilities.

So would a 70D with maybe an L lens or a 6D with a couple of non L, EF lenses be better ?

Because I have no idea what food you are talking about or even who this client is or who their customers are or what that customer's facilities are, etc - and I'm pretty sure neither does the OP at this stage.

Image produced for http://www.naturalcalico.com to use on their website for 2 years.

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Kirk Tuck
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Re: Is that legal?
In reply to ashleymorrison, 5 months ago

Ashley, I was responding to the part of the thread wherein someone mentioned cooking turkeys and shooting fudge for clients. The clients being the producers, packagers or manufacturers of the food "products". What were you referencing?

If we're still in the camera discussion, just about any current interchangeable lens camera will do fine.

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Austin based advertising and portrait photographer, and author of the book series, Minimalist Lighting, and the books: Commercial Photographers Handbook, Photographic Lighting Equipment, and, LED Lighting for Digital Photographers. www.kirktuck.com

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BAK
BAK
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CNBC story
In reply to DCooper, 5 months ago

Here's CNBC's take on food photos:

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101664104

BAK

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