5 lessons we've learned since becoming food bloggers
There are a lot of things we didn't know when we became food bloggers. sure, that's true when trying anything new, but there were surprisingly many issues that we would have never even thought about before we got into this.
So in the spirit of sharing, here are five things we've learned since becoming food bloggers:
1.Making everything look effortless is anything but effortles
So, you follow a few food bloggers on blogs, Facebook and Instagram. You might look at the pictures and think to yourself that that doesn't look that hard. That tablecloth looks likes it's just been tossed on the table with not a care in the world. And that that granola crumble was just casually thrown on top of that bowl of yoghurt. Or what a lovely kitchen/living room/cafe set up.
Well, the truth is that a lot of work that goes into those pictures. Taking a picture in our living room is basically impossible, there is always some painting, electrical cord or sock that sneaks its way into the picture (not to mention that it's super dark anywhere but right next to the windows, since we live on the first floor and are surrounded by tall buildings).
It takes about 30 minutes to make a picture look great -- with deciding which props to use, which plate to plate on, what utensils (if any) to add to the picture, and many other tiny things taking up a lot of time.
And if we want to take a wider picture, that shows more of our home instead of just taking a food picture it takes even longer. Then we have to eliminate all unflattering clutter from the picture and find a good framing that doesn't show off the less photogenic parts of our apartment. Same goes for the kitchen, if we want to take a picture of our food after cooking it there are a lot of pans and pots all over the kitchen. So first - we have to move all of the dirty dishes away and then take the beautiful picture. It takes so much time.
But luckily it's entirely worth it.
2. There is never enough light
Sometimes we have to take the last pictures of the food when the sun has more or less set already, but you've just made the food, prepared the set-up and well - you're hungry. So you just do it, against all your rules. Remember these pictures? They were shot in the rain and the sun was about to set in about 15 minutes. They turned out nice though!
Because we only use natural light, and we both work full time jobs during the day, we can only shoot pictures during the weekend. This can be a problem quite often. Sometimes we make a really delicious dinner during a weeknight and really want to shoot it, but, there is no light. So we wait until the weekend. Here in Sweden during autumn and winter the sun sets between 5pm and 3pm. So yeah, sometimes we have to take a picture of the food in the morning before we go to work.
Like we did with that soup above.
3. It's really hard to know how you want to style your pictures
Sometimes (EDIT: 90% of the time) we make something without planning how to photograph it - "we'll figure it out later", we tell ourselves. Well, it's hard to figure out things later. Like these spinach energy bites that we made a while back. They turned out amazing, and we wanted them to really look delicious.
But we couldn't figure out how. After about 20 minutes of shooting we still weren't happy. We started off with a white backdrop, nah - doesn't really work. Black? Yes, looks better, but something is still wrong. Aaah - chop them into pieces!
4. Napkins are the worst
How the hell do you place a napkin in a picture so that it looks casual and beautiful? Maybe surprisingly, this is one of our biggest issues when we take our pictures. This is something I'm guessing nobody without a food blog understands, but it's really hard to make a napkin, or table cloth, look good in a picture.
It's either too folded, to sterile, too wrinkly, not wrinkly enough, too casual or completely the wrong color. It's the most irritating factor in shooting, you have everything right, you're just about to take the shot but wait - the napkin is wrong. Damn.
5. People are super interested in what you eat for lunch
In Sweden everybody brings a lunchbox to work, it more economic and well, just a part of the culture. So as a food blogger I'm constantly aware of what I eat in front of others.
Truth be told, I personally don't care that much what I eat for lunch. After cooking a lot during the weekend, having plans after work, and a general "don't feel like making my lunch right now" mood I often find myself just grabbing a salad or soup from the store, or throwing together a super basic wok at home.
They never look pretty and I think I'm losing us a lot of potential readers! So remember, if you want to start a food blog, you might want to think about what you bring to work with you. It better look damn fantastic and be healthy as hell.
But the moral of the story here is: Don't judge our blog based on what my lunch looks like! :)
So there you go. A few things we've learned since becoming food bloggers. Did you find any of these surprising? If so, let us know in the comments below! Or better yet, send us an email! And if you're a food blogger yourself we would love to hear about what you found surprising in the beginning!
Have a great rest of the week!
Love / Lotta