photo tip: backdrops

Backdrops are some of the most important elements in taking a photograph. A messy and distracting background compared to a clear and simple backdrops is one of the main components to taking a professional looking photograph. Here are some thing I have learned when it comes to selecting a backdrop for food photography.


A burlap table runner acts as a backdrop for the pumpkin cake, my nightstand for the French doughnuts, and the dishwasher for this salad.

You need to choose the backdrop with the dish you are shooting in the back of your mind. Sometimes a good backdrop is surprising, one of my favorites that I use is the front of the dishwasher. The stainless steel creates a great grey that isn’t too dark but not too light. Another common thing I use when shooting a dish from above is a black antique trunk that is used as a end table in the living room. You can probably recognize that trunk in a ton of my photos if you have followed for awhile. When your dish is a lighter color, or dusted with powdered sugar a black of darker background brings a beautiful contrast. And vise versa, dark dishes, like chocolate look clean and bright on white and light colored backdrops.

The biggest thing to remember when it comes to backgrounds, and backdrops is to make it super clean and simple. Remove anything distracting, you don’t want to see the edge of the lamp sneaking into your photo or your child blurred in the background. Keep a careful watch for these distractions in your photographs.

The other thing you should keep in mind is to bring your dish as far away from the background as you can. It will help the backdrop blur and make your subject pop. Always be looking for something that can be used as an interesting backdrop for your dish.

Hope that’s helpful!

3 thoughts on “photo tip: backdrops

  1. Lovely photos! (YUM!) Also great tips! I love to cook and take photos of what I create so I’ve learned some tricks through trial and error but you gave me some things to think about. Great post 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s