USING SHOTBOX - Staging
Properly staging a photo can make a big difference to the look, feel and visual interest of your picture. Below, you can see the different phases that I went through as I staged my Cinnamon Sugar Crusted French Toast.
First, I plated the food. I wanted to show off the french toast but I also wanted the color and variety from the fruit so I made sure that I didn't cover too much of the bread when I added the strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. After adding the sliced fruit, I realized that the plate was a bit bare so I added a couple of whole strawberries and a few raspberries and blueberries to fill in some of the empty space on the plate. Now I was ready to take my first picture.
I decided to start with a plain, blue background. I thought that the blue would bring out the color of the blueberries and compliment the strawberries and raspberries. I also thought that the blue would be a nice contrast to the white plate. It ended up being too much of a contrast for my liking and the picture was pretty boring.
I got rid of the blue background and opted for a piece of ceramic tile as the base. I liked the texture of the tile, the softness of the color and the way it faded into the background, making the food the focus of the picture. But the picture was still kind of boring.
Next I added a knife, fork and a glass of orange juice. It was interesting to find that when the fork was lying flat next to the plate, in the photo it appeared to be leaning to one side. I ended up putting a piece of putty underneath the left side of the fork so that the fork was tilted to one side in reality but it looked like it was lying flat in the picture. My picture was looking better but I thought that it still needed something more.
I had a round, red placemat that complimented the color of the berries and mirrored the shape of the plate. I put that underneath the plate, put the knife and fork on the plate and changed my camera angle. From the side angle, you could now see the tile backsplash that makes the picture look like the french toast is sitting on my kitchen counter. I finally found the look that I was wanting! I had my best shot!
Unfortunately for me, I do not have a visual imagination. I do not see pictures in my head before I create something so I have to experiment until I find the look that works. That is why it took me four tries to get my best shot! That's ok because I am learning as I go. Luckily, the SHOTBOX makes switching out backgrounds and staging items a quick and easy process so my lack of vision is a minor annoyance rather than a big inconvenience!
It is fun to see the difference that a background, a few props and a camera angle can make to a photo. So play around with the composition of your picture until you capture the image that makes your subject the star!
Go to shotbox.me to learn more about the SHOTBOX.
Photo shot with SHOTBOX and my Samsung Galaxy S5 Smartphone.