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How to Elevate Food Photography with Props

Today’s post is for the foodies and it’s all about how to Elevate Food Photography with Props. You don’t need to be a professional photographer to want to improve the pictures you take of food. Taking better pictures of food feels quite rewarding and it takes the viewer on a journey of senses, of memory and of taste.

The ultimate goal of food photography being — Wow, I want to eat that. 😍

By using different props, you can really create more interest in a picture and you don’t need lots of fancy things either.

In this post, I am going to show you some simple items around the house that you can use when taking a food picture, to really elevate the look.

Let’s dive right in.

1. Interesting Plates and Bowls

How to Elevate food photography with props \

How to Elevate food photography with props

How to Elevate food photography with props

How to Elevate food photography with props

How to Elevate food photography with props

How to Elevate food photography with props

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Overtime, start to collect different types of plates and bowls.

If you visited me, you would notice that I have a little wooden box (I need shelves soon 😂) dedicated to mismatched plates and bowls.

I generally look for crockery that is either white, matte or very bright and colourful and the more textured the better.

You can buy these items when they are on sale, or just purchase individual items when you spot something interesting. (no need to buy a whole set)

I know some people even buy crockery and ceramics from second-hand shops and vintage markets – so keep an eye out when browsing and I am sure you will find some gems.

2. Add some fabric

Joburg food photographer


Happy Earth People Pasta

food photography props

Gluten Free Gingerbread Men

How to Elevate food photography with props


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Overnight Oats Le Famished Cat 3

When it comes to fabric, you don’t necessarily need anything super fancy here. Even basic kitchen towels go a long way toward warming up your shots and creating texture.

I have a bunch of mismatched tea towels and napkins that I use, and they range from white, blue to grey.

I have even used blankets and pillows before, like in the Gingerbread Men and Cadbury images.

3. Household Items

Baking Paper is a lovely surface to take a picture on.

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Or, leave the plates and just use a desk, table or book…

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For a more rustic look, why not snap a picture with your food in the bakeware you cooked it in?

Chocolate Granola Tarts

How to Elevate food photography with props

Gluten Free Banana Bread


How to Elevate food photography with props

You could even use a serving tray or platter. This is a piece of slate that I used as a plate.

Food Stylist, Johannesburg

4. Add a Human element

How to Elevate food photography with props

Johannesburg restaurant photographer

How to Elevate food photography with props

food photographer joburg

By adding in hands or other human elements you can add interest and help people connect with what’s happening.

Don’t be afraid to rope in friends or family to help you get a good picture. 😉

I hope that these tips on elevating food photography with props help you to take better food pictures.

Most importantly, remember to keep practising.

I am nowhere where I want to be, but I am persistent and committed to learning how to capture food beautifully.

Happy snapping,


All images were shot by me 😁



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