Friday Featured Photographers – Kiwi & Carrot

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This week we thought we’d mix it up a bit and instead of the traditional wedding, or adventure photographer we want to spotlight the lesser talked about, but equally as talented — food photographer. Sarah Romero and Elizabeth Menlove are our featured photographers of the week! They take beautiful, colorful, and yummy pictures of their recipes for their food blog Kiwi & Carrot! Taking pictures of food may seem easy, but trust us it is no easy task, trying to make the food look appetizing and exposed in the proper light. Find out more below how this mother-daughter-duo have created a successful blog, and how they capture beautiful images to keep their followers drooling…

Pizza Three Ways

1. A big part of having a food blog is taking beautiful pictures of your recipes. What kind of camera do you use most often when shooting your blog photos? 

“We use a Canon 6D for all of our photos! We love that camera like it’s our child. It’s very user friendly and delivers beautiful photos. When we occasionally film a video for the blog, we use a Canon C100 Mark II.”

Coconut Thai Salad

2. What kind of post-processing, if any, do you do on your photos of your recipes? 

“As far as post-processing, we use Adobe Photoshop. We try not to do too much editing because we want the food to look like it will when our readers make the recipe, but we do some basic color correcting, cropping, etc.”

3. You guys have a beautiful Instagram feed, that I’m sure you put a lot of time and effort into. What kind of process do you go through to get such great images?

Instagram – @kiwiandcarrot

“Thank you! That definitely didn’t come overnight. It’s funny because when we first started food photography, it looked awful! We thought it was great, but now looking back at those first photos, we have come SO far, which is exciting.

As far as the photography process, once we’ve nailed the actual recipe, we start by thinking about the story we want the photo to tell. Do we want it to look bright and cheerful? Or maybe a more organic feel? Do we want it to look messy and show some of the actual cooking process, or do we want it to look clean and organized like a formal dinner setting? Once we’ve decided on the story, we look through our cupboard of food-blogging “props,” which is basically an avalanche of different colored plates, bowls, cutting boards, etc., and we choose the “props” that will help us to achieve the look we want. We set everything up by a window…we LOVE natural light for our photos. Occasionally we’ll have to supplement with artificial lighting, but prefer not to. Once we have everything in place, we just start snapping photos and adjust things as needed to get the look we want. Sometimes it just works, and sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to get it right. But once we do, it’s worth the struggle. It’s a very rewarding process from start to finish!”

Avo Toast Three Ways

4. I can imagine that it gets pretty hectic in your kitchen with all the yummy meals you are making, how do you keep your camera clean during your cooking and photographing process?

“Oh my goodness hectic is an understatement. Most of the time on “cooking days” it looks like a bomb went off in the kitchen. We wish we could say we kept the camera completely clean through the entire process, but when you dip your fingers into a pasta sauce to try it and then the cherry sorbet you’re photographing behind you starts melting, you just have to lick your finger and get the shot. Lens cleaning wipes have become our best friend. But that’s one thing we love about our Canon, it can put up with a lot of shenanigans from us, and it cleans up beautifully!”

Chicken Madeira

5. Making food look appetizing takes a lot of skill and styling to get the right shot. What is your go-to lens to get that shot? 

“We use a Canon EF 50 mm for most of our shots, but if we want to get really up-close-and-personal with that oozing cheese, we use a Sigma DG Macro 70mm (similar here).”

6. Lastly, how do you feel like becoming successful food bloggers has changed your life? Does it give you motivation to eat healthy everyday, or do you sometimes just get tired of cooking? 

“We are thrilled to hear we’re considered “successful” in your eyes! Food blogging is such a ride…there are absolute ups and downs, with a lot of successes, and a fair amount of failure. We definitely have our days when we’re just tired of cooking, but the good days outnumber the bad, so we just keep plugging on. We definitely wouldn’t be where we are today without the help of each other…we motivate one another to keep going. Being a mom-and-daughter duo has been so fun because it gives us something to work on together, and that’s the real reason we keep doing what we’re doing. We’re just a mom and daughter who really love to cook, eat and share recipes with other people.”

Veggie Wrap

That’s a wrap on this week’s featured photographer! Big thank you to Sarah and Elizabeth for showing us behind-the-scenes of their yummy pictures. Find more of their work and recipes here.

See you next week!

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