What is #FOODPORN and why is it everywhere?

I’m sure we’re all familiar with the #foodporn tag, if you haven’t seen this on Instagram or other social media sites such as Tumblr or Pinterest then you’ve definitely been living under a rock. Or maybe you have and are one of those people who are guilty of reaching for your phone instead of your fork when the food arrives (in that case, don’t worry, we understand).

Foodporn is the over-glamorisation of the visual presentation of food; think glamour shots but with food instead. Seized upon by ‘foodies’, it is now impossible to scroll through Instagram without drooling over mouth-watering pictures of food. In fact, just searching #foodporn on Instagram returns over 100 million hits! (But warning: may also incite both feelings of hunger and jealousy).

What started out as outrageous displays of decadence with off the chart calories has now been taken over by the health trend. No longer is it close up shots of golden potato wedges drenched in sauce and slathered with melted cheese, but avocado on toast with an egg benedict perched precariously on top and a sprinkle of black pepper.

Chia seeds, berries, granola, multi coloured fruit and veg also make regular appearances in the #foodporn sphere. This progression of the #foodporn trend has encouraged people to change up their menus and discover new, interesting and healthy recipes.

What makes a good shot? Well, food photography is a new form of art, and with all art, requires skills and patience. So, here are Impact Food’s top 5 tips for taking a #foodporn ready photo:

  1. Lighting, lighting, lighting. Natural light is your friend, so take your photo during the day if you can, by a window preferably (though this might mean only breakfasts and lunches get the attention they deserve).

2. It’s all about the accessories; a good set of crockery and tableware makes all the difference. Chuck in some flowers or condiments in there to make your picture really stand out.

3. Utilise the focus function on your camera/phone. You want to draw attention to the key element of the dish, so the rest should be slightly out of focus to let the important parts take centre stage. Be patient with this, you don’t want to demolish the plate and later realise your photo was blurred.

4. Get mixing with colours and textures, which also means choosing the right food; there is such a thing as ‘photogenic’ food so use brightly coloured fruits and veg!

5. Work your angles – the favourites are usually extreme close ups, the standard bird’s eye view capturing symmetry which is always easy on the eye, or the side on view.

Follow these tips and you’ll end up with an insta-worthy shot. You might look crazy doing it and your food might get cold, but do it for the ‘gram.

Cooked something impressive? Share it with us! (Shoutout to @impactmagfood?)

Serena Tam

Images and set image by Serena Tam. 

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