Síomha’s tips for beautiful food styling

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    Síomha Guiney's food styling tips.
    Síomha Guiney's food styling tips.

    “You eat with your eyes first.”

    This is just so true! Whenever you see a lovely plate of food, you start drooling before even smelling or tasting it. That’s why food styling is so important – especially if you want to share some pictures of your dishes on social media.

    Síomha Guiney, one of our food stylists, a coleslaw queen and sandwich architect, has some great tips to make your food LOOK delicious. Now you can share snaps of it with confidence and have the comments and likes roll in.

    Have a contrasting background.
    Have a contrasting background.

    Background​

    Think critically about the backdrop/surface the food is on, does it contrast the food? Does it compliment it? Is it too busy? The right background can make or break a good photo.

    Texture​

    Think about adding sauce, a drizzle of oil or herbs to savoury dishes to add texture. Things like chopped nuts, caramel sauce, grated chocolate or cream to sweet dishes can add that extra element. Even simple steps such as toast instead of fresh bread can make a big difference, or choosing a beautiful crusty bread over a soft white bread.

    Make it look a bit messy.
    Make it look a bit messy.

    Mess​

    It’s okay to get a little messy! It can really help to add life to your photographs, rather than having everything perfectly portioned in dishes, allowing food to spill over naturally works really well. A spoon beside a dish with some of the sauce on it or drips down a glass can be great, so don’t feel the need to have everything absolutely perfect. Natural is best.

    Props​

    Props aren’t always needed but can be a wonderful tool to enhance your food styling. These don’t have to super fancy or elaborate, something as simple as some parchment paper or baking paper can add interest and texture. A tea towel under a baking tray or casserole dish adds to the story by suggesting the dish has been taken straight from the oven. Your own hands can even be a handy prop!

    Get another take on the same dish by slicing it or digging in.
    Get another take on the same dish by slicing it or digging in.

    Dig in!​

    This is important for two reasons, 1: hopefully it’s delicious and 2: taking out a slice/spoonful/portion and then shooting again is a very easy way to get another take on the same dish. A apple tart with a slice removed can be so much more interesting than a full tart.

    READ MORE: Meet the Easy Food team

     

    Pauline Smyth
    Pauline Smyth

    Pauline Smyth, one of our food stylists, recipe testers and and amazing artist, shares some of her best tips for cooking at home. Click here to learn more.