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New Logo for Yes!Chef! and Food Photography Bloopers

New Yes!Chef! Logo

New Yes!Chef! Logo

I was stalking some of the food blog community sites and a discussion came up about watermarking photos.  I don’t usually mark mine, but I have found so many photos of mine used without my permission or even attribution, that I decided that I would add a small watermark to them so hopefully somebody viewing them would know where they came from.  So, after spending a good deal of time thinking about it and trying out different things, I came up with the above.

And the second choice, which was actually the first one I made:

Alaternate Yes!Chef! Logo

Alternate Yes!Chef! Logo

I can’t decide which one I like best.  The top one isn’t quite as colorful, but the second one makes him look like a hungry lumberjack.  I’ll probably stick with the first one for a while.

Attention Food Photogs:  You may want to stop reading here, unless you would just like a good laugh.

I know most photogs have photos that they look at and say, “What was I thinking?”  Then, we quickly mark them with an X and delete them.  I say, “Why do that when you can make a blog post out of them?”  My photog friends would probably answer, “Because those photos are bad and people will have nightmares over them.”  I laugh in the face of nightmares and boldly display some of my worst outtakes from the last several months.

Now this first entry was one of those things that I did not think about until I got it on my computer.  It looks like I posed a headless chicken in a fairly provocative manner and then she peed.  Most embarrassing photo I have taken in a very long time.

Not attractive

Not attractive

The next photo is one of those that looked better in my head than it did in actuality.  I was photographing a martini that Yes!Chef! made for me when I noticed Obie’s reflection in the bottom of the glass.  So, I took the shot.  I think it would have been better left in my head.

Obie in the martini glass

Obie in the martini glass

Obie was not pleased.

Obie's "What were you thinking" face

Obie’s “What were you thinking” face

For my next embarrassing moment in food photography we have a great dish that Yes!Chef! made.  He made a lovely pork loin roast on the barbie and added a great strawberry sauce to go on top.  It was really quite tasty.  However, my props just ruined the whole dish.

Spicy Barbecued Pork Loin with Strawberry Sauce and Grilled Artichokes

Spicy Barbecued Pork Loin with Strawberry Sauce and Grilled Artichokes

I inherited a whole collection of great salt and pepper shakers from my grandmother and I’ve been trying to incorporate them into my food shots. However, Ma and Pa S&P here look more like they belong in a Halloween shot than this barbecue food photo.  I think they could probably scare small children.

And here’s another photo using a cute S&P shaker pair, but the whole picture just doesn’t make any sense.

Lime, Strawberries and kissing Dutch Salt and Pepper shakers

Lime, Strawberries and kissing Dutch Salt and Pepper shakers

Nothing works in this shot.  The colors, the linen, the adorable kissing S&P shakers and, the food.  What was I thinking?

Yes!Chef!

Yes!Chef!

Even Yes!Chef! doesn’t understand where that picture was coming from.  It wasn’t even his food.

Sometimes it’s not about the styling…it’s about the food.  And even when the food tastes really good, it just doesn’t come across well in a photo.  Here’s a prime example:

Roasted Tomatoes and Artichokes

Roasted Tomatoes and Artichokes

This does not in any way look appetizing, although it was quite good.  I roasted some tomatoes and some artichoke hearts. drizzled some balsamic over the tomatoes and then I melted some Mozzarella cheese on top of the tomatoes.  Not even little sprigs of basil will help this one. And the fork looks like it belongs to a giant.  Scale, scale, scale!

And then there is this:

Pizzookie with Ice Cream

Pizookie with Ice Cream

My youngest son asked me to make him a pizookie.  I had never  heard of it before, but he had tried one in a restaurant and really liked it. So, I looked up the recipe and made it for him.  I wanted this to look like I cooked it in this little ceramic pan (which I hadn’t), put some lovely ice cream on the top, which began to melt because of the hot cookie (it wasn’t hot when I took this photo.) And then I wanted it to look like someone had taken a bite out of it because they couldn’t wait for it to be served.  Instead, it looks like a hot mess with crumbs flung everywhere and a messy spoon in front and in back. And, it doesn’t come close to looking like I cooked the cookie in the pan.  Besides, the point of a pizookie is that it is a cookie that is cooked in a small pizza pan.

What was I thinking?

Badly styled artichokes

Badly styled artichokes

The artichokes in the above photo do not in any way look natural or pleasingly arranged.  If only there was a little sauce under them, they would look like synchronized swimmers.  Plus, the plate is ugly, dirty and chipped. If it’s any consolation, I told Yes!Chef! they tasted good.

And finally, a photo I took while I was actually watching a  live streaming food photo workshop from Creative Live.

Tomatoes with marinated red onions and blue cheese.

Tomatoes with marinated red onions and blue cheese.

Sigh.  Alas, another failure.  The curly-cue onion and the out of focus bread are game-enders.  I felt like I was being inspired as I was watching the workshop…but I think now it might have been gas.  (Although the food photography workshop was very, very good.  I probably should watch it again.)

And there you have it:  Food photography gone bad.

However, I’m an optimist by nature, so I prefer to think of these photos as deconstructed food photos.

Enjoy!

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14 Comments Post a comment
  1. Love the chicken pix!!! :)

    August 2, 2013
    • One of my more embarrassing photographic moments. She is kinda cute, though.

      August 3, 2013
  2. Oh my! What a funny post. I think you are bit critical of your work; not all the pictures were complete disasters! Lol! I like the lumberjacky inspired logo! Well done!

    August 2, 2013
    • I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I am probably my own worst critic when it comes to my photography, but I’ve found that that’s how I have stayed motivated and continue to want to improve. Plus, my family keeps me humble when I start thinking too much of myself. :)

      August 3, 2013
  3. Those are just great photos, deconstructed and all! I do love the peeing chicken. That’s hilarious. I do think watermarking is a good idea. I’ve had a few of my photos “lifted” also…but I don’t know how to watermark with the programs I’m currently using, so for now, that will wait. I’ll feel a wave of interest in a new learning curve before long! Hugs to Obie! I kind of liked the photo with his image in the glass. :-)

    August 2, 2013
    • People are going to use my photos, no matter what I do. I have spent much time tracking them down, but mostly I’m ignored when I contact people and businesses that use them. I think most people do it innocently…they just don’t understand the ins and outs of using photos that they find on the internet. I figure if I watermark them, at least they will know where they came from. I actually don’t mind people using my photos if they give me a link back (and it would be nice if they asked) and don’t claim them as their own.

      August 3, 2013
  4. lovely post! Nice to know I am not alone in taking pictures of food that just doesn’t work :D

    August 3, 2013
    • This is just a tiny, tiny slice of the photos I have that don’t work. Generally when I shoot food for a blog I take close to 100 photos…sometimes using different settings on the camera to see what works and what doesn’t. I only use about 8-12 food photos per blog, so that’s a lot of photos that either don’t work, are duplicates or are horrifying to look at. :)

      August 3, 2013
  5. That’s hilarious, Karen! And, hey, if you make the watermark large enough, you won’t have to bother with taking any photos. :)

    August 3, 2013
  6. The chicken and martini glass pictures are awesome! :) I do especially love the synchronized-swimming-artichoke plate, though…I’m also guilty of trying to “pose” my food on occasion and it never, ever turns out well. Great post – thanks for sharing the fun!

    August 3, 2013
    • That’s what happens when a portrait photographers tries to be a food photographer. ;)

      August 3, 2013
  7. I must say I found myself cracking up! The artichoke picture was hilarious! I totally relate and I am so far from being a food photographer. Great narrative too!

    August 3, 2013
    • Thanks! If you can’t laugh at yourself (or your photos) then you aren’t living…I’m glad you enjoyed it. I thought some of these photos were pretty funny, in a horrifying sort of way. :)

      August 3, 2013

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