A food photographer understands restaurants, understands what customers want and, most importantly, understands food.
Having worked in the hospitality industry for over 30 years, I’ve lost count of the amount of times a restaurant has told me they don’t need a photographer because “the owner’s brother will do it for free”. Now, there may be the rare occasion where the owner’s brother shoots for Delicious Magazine and therefore would actually be very helpful, but most of the time this is simply not the case. I have also lost count of the number of times I’ve been called asking for help because the photographs didn’t come out as they had expected.
Photography is about having a good eye for composition, a solid understanding of light and an ability to get the best out of your subject. So, it’s no surprise that many photographers can apply their skills to many types of photography. However, there is a reason many photographers choose a niche and that’s because there is so much to learn about one type of photography to be really good at it that it takes a lot of time and focus.
Shooting for the hospitality industry comes with its own set of rules, its own language and its own difficulties. So, hiring someone who knows how the industry works, understands the difficulties you as a restaurant owner go through and understands how to get the most out of the time and budget available really is going to benefit your business.
Shooting an entire menu in one day isn’t easy. It needs to be well planned and well executed.
The benefits of hiring a food photographer to shoot your restaurant’s food are:
They understand how the industry works
They know that your café is going to be extremely busy between 8am and 10am, they know that your bar is going to be packed past 5pm on a Friday and they know that shooting Sunday roasts on a Sunday just isn’t happening. They know that, for most restaurants, Mondays and Tuesdays are the quietest days and that your best chef may be off duty so it’s best to arrange things well in advance to make sure they’re there on the right day.
These things may seem obvious to you, and to me, but to someone who has never worked in the hospitality industry before they don’t necessarily come to mind straight away.
They understand food
If you want your food to look as amazing as it does when it first comes out of the kitchen then that’s when it needs to be photographed. A food photographer will know just how important it is to discuss timings with your chef beforehand so that food is not wasted and the photographs portray your dishes in their best possible light.
They understand marketing your restaurant
One of the most important things to think about when shooting any subject is how the images are going to be used afterwards. For restaurants, there are multiple uses and more often than not these images will end up on the website, in print and across a variety of digital channels. It’s therefore important to make sure that they are shot appropriately so allow for the different dimensions across different mediums.
If you wanted to buy good quality meat would you go to the local supermarket or would you go to a specialist butcher who understands what you need and can help you find it?
Photography of your food is critical to getting people into your restaurant, especially in the social media driven world we live in today, so it’s important to do it well. Working with someone who knows what they’re doing means less stress for you and your team, less wasted time and budget, and better assets to be used in your marketing.
If you would like to chat about food photography for your restaurant or you’re just keen to know a bit more about how it works then feel free to drop us an email or give us a call.
020 7385 8158