The iPhone Food Photography Tips You’ll Wish You Knew Sooner

Lauren Powell


These days, it’s almost criminal not to take a snap of your food before you actually dig in, especially if it’s a work of edible art. But as any amateur photographer knows, it’s not as easy as it looks to capture an Instagram-worthy shot of your meal. (Unless it’s a rainbow-hued acai bowl, of course.)

Enter former Masterchef Australia contestant and cookbook author, Daniel Churchill, a seasoned pro when it comes to taking the perfect food photo. Thanks to the high-quality camera most of us walk around with 24/7 (hello, iPhone), there’s zero excuse for not snapping a shot that would make any foodie green with envy. Scroll on for Churchill’s experts tips.

1. Lighting

“I feel this is absolutely key and the biggest point of difference to a quality food shot. Natural light cannot be beat. A windowsill or by a well-lit glass panel is always going to tick serious boxes. So always try and get a seat close to a window or do what I do and take your food outside to shoot.”

2. Angles

“I personally feel the iPhone has such a strong opportunity for the classic bird’s eye view. Not only does it pick up detail but it has been optimised for a sharper image across the entire frame. This is quite different to a stock lens on a SLR camera which can be sharp in the centre but then as you look towards the edges be quite blurry.

A 45 degree shot with your iPhone can be very successful too, particularly when you have a food item with height (this is where a bird’s eye shot can be not so successful in translating the art of the dish). When doing this be sure to tap a focus point of the plate. I always like it to be something strong or iconic such as the crispy edge of a chicken, or the golden shine of a piece of fruit. It also helps to have a few items in the relative similar colour scheme present in the background, such as napkins and similar textures.”

3. Depth of field

“This is one of the best features! You can take a shot and move your phone slightly around the content, in my case a plate or bowl. From there, the iPhone will select the best of the bunch from a clarity and focus perspective and you can favourite which one you would like to use. This makes it super easy when you edit so you only need to work on a few as opposed to working through the whole album.”

4. Depth of field

“With the make of the iPhone lens it treats itself to a well performed depth of field affect. Perform the focus option mentioned above and hold down the capture button to engage the burst function. Your iPhone will provide you with what it believes to be the best image from the burst. You can decide to use that as your shining image or scroll through the others. You can also tap to focus on something in the foreground which should give you some depth of field as well.”

5. Filters

“Filters are a big part of your personality. Meaning that you tend to stick between one or two variations. If you look at your grid in your profile, this consistency is not a coincidence. It is your perception to what you like and what bubbly-ness, drama, happy, or comic feelings you want people to see. This is one that you will pick yourself, as it is completely a reflection upon yourself. I am a big fan of VSCO and Snapeseed, both containing a number of different filter formats.”

Head to Churchill’s lifestyle site for more tips on how to take the perfect food shot and shop this citrus-printed iPhone case.

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