Veggie tales

This week’s Challenge is a still life project, as suggested by Hannah. It also seems a good idea since the weather isn’t likely to be great this week😦

Your brief is to use fruit and vegetables to set up a still life scene. The details of the scene itself (indoor, outdoor, with or without a backdrop) are completely up to you – so long as you use fruit and veg!

For those who are new to still life photography, there are a few tips you could try. I’ve plagiarised these shamelessly from digital-photography-school.com.

  1. Use a simple backdrop: Wrinkles and ridges in a still life photograph – unless a part of the setting – will be distracting to your main subject. Be vigilant about keeping your backdrops smooth and simple.
  2. Make your lighting contrasty: Whether you are using flashes or lamps, it’s important that you include bright highlights and dark shadows to bring out the contrast in your scene.
  3. Light directionally: Side light is always most effective for bringing out texture and creating dynamic variation between the highlights and shadows. Side light will enable you to give dimension and depth to your still life imagery.
  4. Pay attention to your angles: Two things to think about when faced with a studio lighting scenario. a). The position of the lights to your subject and b). the position of your subject to the camera. Side light will give dimension, but so also will the angle at which you take your shot. Don’t be afraid to experiment and change up angles. A photo is most interesting when you give a new perspective to something that is ordinary.
  5. Light for shape: We see life 3 dimensionally. For this reason, the most dynamic photographs are the ones in which the audience could walk into the scene, or reach out and touch the subject. Lighting for shape will be most emphasized by side light, when your highlights spread along the edge of your subject and add that third dimension.

Don’t worry about jargon, and don’t worry about breaking the rules. Above all, have fun. Try arranging some groceries and lighting them with a torch or desk lamp. It doesn’t have to be high-tech, and you can experiment until you find something you like.

Double points for those who set up their vegetables to look like people!

Please send your organic creations in by noon on Tuesday 5th October. Good luck!