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Who doesn’t love fresh food expertly prepared with an artistic flair and served beautifully?
I’ve photographed food and pastries for advertising and editorial work since the early Eighties. Back then we used 8×10″ sheets of film to photograph food because the slightest grain or distortion would ruin the appeal of the dish. I have a fantastic and talented stylist I like to work with, Harry McMann, out of Baltimore, and we’ve collaborated on projects for The American Heart Association making five or so recipes for their magazine every quarter.
Unlike most food assignments where the beauty and uniqueness of the dish is paramount, we have an additional challenge with “Heart Healthy” dishes. Harry pulls out all the stops to make these recipes look attractive. We must measure all the portions and there is no margin for error.
Folks often ask how we make the food look so delicious. Do we use motor oil and soap suds for that perfect mug of beer? How about mashed potatoes substituted for that delicious scoop of vanilla ice-cream? The answer is simple-
The truth-in-advertising laws were enacted in the Seventies when companies got caught dumping in extra product into their ad photography. The FTC came down on them pretty hard and now new laws forbid cheating on portion sizes or contents. That’s why “Serving Suggestion” is printed in tiny type on many food illustrations. It IS legal to use substitute foods like mashed potatoes in an ice-cream shot if it’s not specifically referencing an ice-cream product since potatoes are edible.
Have a dish you need photographed? Please give me a ring.