Food Photography Tools - Skillful Cook
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Food Photography Tools

Yes, hi! The fun part! Making your food look IRRESISTIBLE so that people shed real actual tears that they are not already eating it. Plus, making all your hard work look crisp and inviting is key. Here is a list of our go-to camera bits and all things photography-related to help you wherever you are at along your blogging journey.

Disclaimer: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and I will earn a commission if you purchase through those links. I use all of the products listed below and recommend them because they are companies that I have found helpful and trustworthy.

Primary Camera Body: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

This is the camera body I am currently using when I take photos for Skillful Cook. I love that it has a touch screen on the back that allows you to focus in with just a tap so you can get it nice and sharp on whatever part of the photo you want. It also connects to wifi so you can transfer photos to your phone or computer wirelessly - I use this from time to time when I’m shooting away from my computer and want to get the photos on my phone.

Secondary Camera Body: Canon EOS 6D

This is in our small fleet of camera bodies and it serves as my backup. I used it for many years as my primary camera body, and now have switched to the 5D Mark IV. Not only does the 6D shoot incredible pictures, but it also shoots really incredible HD video. It’s an expensive camera, so if you’re just getting started look first at purchasing something like the Canon EOS Rebel SL1 or even using the camera on your phone. Remember – the best camera is the one that you have with you.

Primary Lens: Canon 50mm 1.4

This is my tried and true food photography lens. It’s an amazing lens that has stood the test of time for me (I used the Nikon version when I first started and now I’m using the Canon). It isn’t cheap, but you get what you pay for with a lens. This lens is considered a prime lens, which means that it doesn’t zoom in or zoom out. You’re only able to shoot at 50mm, which isn’t a big deal with food photography (food is pretty good at sitting still). I shoot 40% of all my food photos with this lens, and I highly recommend it if you’re looking for a really good starter lens. The Canon 50mm 1.8 lens is almost as good for $250 dollars less.

Secondary Lens: Canon EF 100mm 2.8L IS

I use this for those super dramatic up-close shots of my food. It’s a prime lens, like the 50mm, but it’s going to be geared towards getting you that great macro shot right up close to your food. It’s great for showing texture and creating a look that says: FEED ME NOW. The only thing that I would say about this lens is that because the frame is getting a smaller area of space, you might need to use a smaller aperture (like 5.0 or 6.0) which requires you to bump your ISO a lot higher than you would with the 50mm. For example, with 50mm I would use settings like f/2.8, 1/60, and 200 ISO, but with the 100mm lens I would be using settings like f/5.0, 1/60, and 1000 ISO.

Travel and Portrait Lens: Canon 70-200mm 2.8L IS

I use this massive mother of a lens when I am shooting portait-type photos – and I LOVE IT. Unlike the 50mm prime lens, this lens has a really dramatic zoom factor, so you can sit far back from a group of people and still get some great candid close-ups without them even knowing. So basically it’s a good lens for being creepy. I use this most frequently for family, engagement, maternity, and travel photos. This is going to be awesome for any type of photos that involve people and places.

iPhone 14 Pro

Yes, my phone. I love this little thing so much. I do so much work on it while on the go and it gives me so much flexibility without sacrificing quality. I use it for so much content creation from recording audio, to filming and editing videos, to taking and editing photos. It’s a powerhouse!

Li-Ion Flash with Trigger Kit

This flash makes it super easy to take great photos IN ANY LIGHTING. Any time of day, any weather - doesn’t matter. You’re going to get good, consistent light with this thing. Once you get it set up with your camera, it just flashes once when you hit the shutter button and you’ve got beautiful light exactly where you want it. (I use this with the stand and umbrella.)

Softbox Umbrella Reflector

This is the umbrella that I use for the flash! It is a nice size in that it distributes the light well but isn’t overwhelmingly large in my space. It can also be easily manipulated with covers and flash position to get a variety of styles.

Sandisk 64GB Extreme SD Memory Card

Let’s be honest, it’s never fun to buy a memory card. Camera? Yes. Lens? You bet. Memory card? Nope. But let me make a case for this little plastic piece of awesomeness. It’s a really fast memory card with tons of space. This is especially important if you’re shooting your photographs in RAW mode or recording video. If you have room in your budget it might even be worth it to buy a couple of these, just in case.

Adobe Lightroom

Lightroom isn’t cheap, but it’s an amazing tool! If you’re interested in getting it I’d suggest getting the free trial first to give it a test run. If you’re still a little hesitant on purchasing the software you can always purchase a month-by-month subscription until you know you’re ready to purchase the software outright.

Tasty Food Photography

Photography is an incredible tool that can have a profound impact on the life of your blog or website. I’ve learned a lot of things – both big and small – in the last few years, and this book is my way of sharing all that with you. My hope is that the tips and tricks I write about in this book will be practical, easy to read, and will ultimately help you take food photos that make people say, “I am dying to eat that right now!” To date, over 9,400 people have purchased Tasty Food Photography and used it to help improve their food photography. You can learn more about the book and read some testimonials on this page.