Day 19: Fill Right Colors in Your Food Photos

Strawberry Parafait PhotoDo your food photos have right color? How do you decide which color would go with a red strawberry? Which photo works better in the photo above?

Is Color Really Important?

Color is another important element of a great food photograph. Like we have talked before on this blog, without the right color in the photo, food doesn’t remain appetizing.

Black and white photography is an amazing art and for the type of food photography we are talking here, color in food photos in very important. Color moves us visually and creates temptation in food photos.

5 Ways to Get Color Right

So if you would like to capture the right color in your food photography, how would you go about it? Previously we talked about five ways to get colors right, These five ways are really what it takes to make sure you have correct colors. Here are those five ways:

  1. In-camera adjustments
  2. White card
  3. Post processing
  4. Natural Light
  5. Use Correct Artificial Light

To read more about the 5 ways of getting true color, go to this link

Understanding the Color Chemistry

After knowing the importance of right color and how to get true colors, the next important thing is to understand the harmony between colors. Colors have a chemistry and the juxtaposition of these colors in a frame impacts the photograph immensely.

Below is a variant of color wheel, commonly used by graphic designers. Based on this color wheel, colors on opposite side of this wheel complement each other in a scene. So, red would complement green, blue complements orange and yellow complements violet.


Using Color Wheel to Compose a Compelling Image

Based on this wheel, now you know the harmony between the colors. This wheel can be used to compose a photograph with color. If you have a dish that is dominant in yellow color, to create a photograph with heavy contrast, you should use the color that’s opposite to yellow in this circle.

Violet, when included in a frame with a dish that is dominantly yellow, will create a photograph that is vibrant and creates amazing contrast.

Blue Orange Contrast Blue Orange Color Chemistry

Suggested Reading

Your Assignment

Your assignment is to create vibrant photograph by choosing a dish dominant in a certain color and fill your make photo that uses complementary colors. Composition should always start with your goal and then move to the color of your food or hero.

Use your creativity and make a photograph that shows colors and their complementary pairs.

Good luck. Happy coloring.

Photo Blue Orange Color Chemistry by D Sharon Pruitt

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  1. Great article. I remember learning about complimentary colours when I first picked up a camera. It’s a basic skill but so many fail to understand the importance of it.

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