I can’t recall where, but I recently read some thoughts on food photography. The photographer in the article wondered why so many pictures of food are taken from above looking down, as though from the view of a bird flying over the food.
This visual image, of a wren or a cardinal or even crow, flying over the food, looking down and snapping a picture with his tiny little camera, makes me laugh. It’s not only the image that I find funny, but also how influenced I am by trends in photography.
I recall my initial love of photographs of feet planted in all sorts of spaces – in leaves, on stairs, on tiled floors – wearing all manner of snazzy shoes – boots, converse sneakers and even bare feet.
I often naturally place the subject of my photo to one side or the other, but because of a trend I noticed on Instagram, I tried putting the subject in the bottom center of the photograph, with lots of space above.
For a while, I spent my time arranging pretty things on boards with layers of fabric. I think I might have been enamored of rust and patina at one time, too.
None of these influences were negative. They were all part of the learning curve. Part of learning is copying. And copying leads to play because after a while, we get tired of copying, and we want to do our own thing.
Just my opinion, but the photo of the Little Cutie clementines from above looks like a picture of oranges.
The photo of the Little Cuties on the cutting board at the window, looks like my afternoon snack, and it’s a lot more interesting to me.
And while I was at it, I went ahead and took a few pictures of the egg salad we made for lunch - a new recipe with golden raisins, chia seeds, and curry. One shot top down, of all the ingredients.
And one of the egg salad in a little Weck jar, ready for tomorrow's lunch, too.