Food Photography · Photography

Improve your Still Life photography with these 7 important tips!

Do you have some time to yourself and want to try taking pictures to improve your photography? Are you stuck indoors due to bad weather? Why not try your hand at some still life photography?

Today, I had some free time since my husband had a holiday and was at home taking care of the baby. I wanted to go out to try a bit of street photography. But, unfortunately we were stuck indoors due to rain. So I decided to do some Still Life photography instead.

A clean background

I started with a chair with black base and picked out a black photographic mount for prints as my background. A black or a white background makes your subject stand out more.

Objects at home

There were some fruits in the refrigerator. So, I decided it was a good subject for my Still Life photography. Fruits and vegetables are good objects to try Still Life or food photography. They stay fresh longer than hot food and you can eat them after you shoot is done. I picked some green and red grapes that I had in the house.

Complementary objects

I needed a bowl in which I could place the fruits. I picked a rosewood carved bowl that I had. It complemented the colours of the fruits well. If it had been a steel or a plain white ceramic bowl, it would have dominated the colours of the fruits.

Fruits Still Life Photo

Lighting conditions

Window light is the best to try Still Life for the first time. It provides the soft, directional light that makes any subject look good. It is good to practice your photography at first.

Try different angles

Try using a low angle or a higher one. Try moving to the left or to the right, to find the best angle instead of just shooting straight on. For the above shot, I had to move slightly to the side since the background I was using was a mount and it did not cover the entire back of the chair like a black cloth would.


I started by using just the green and the red grapes. But after trying a few different ways of placing those in the bowl, I felt it needed something extra to balance the shot. Three types of fruits in the shot would that little bit extra. The composition I currently had seemed like it needed another fruit on the right side of the picture. I tried adding different fruits like kiwi, orange, strawberries and finally the apple. Remember to alter the positions of your subject and try different combinations to get the best composition.

Have patience and remember to enjoy

When I tried adding the kiwi, it seemed a little dull. Adding the orange overpowered the picture with too bright colours. The strawberries made a pretty picture. But when I added the apple, it complemented the grapes best. I had even tried placing the red and green grapes in different positions. Vary the objects, positions, angles and try different combinations. Remember to have fun!

Do you have any tips not mentioned above? Please share your results in the comments. I’d love to hear from you!



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