I am SO excited to share this post because it's genuinely been one of the best decisions I've made this year! I have always loved food photography and was forever snapping photos of food on my phone - and up until 6 months ago (May 2021) every recipe photo on this website has come from an iPhone.
I really wanted to learn more about food photography but I didn't know where to start and every time I started looking into it, the information and new tools I'd need (camera, editing software etc.) just seemed so overwhelming (and expensive!). I'd heard of Foodtography School, I'd started following them on social media in 2018 and I knew fellow foodies who had taken courses - and raved about it.
I decided to enrol after reading a friend's blog post review online - and as it's such a commonly asked question through Supper Club subscribers, I thought I'd create a post to help share more information on the course and my experience, tips and my own results for anybody who is interested in diving into food photography.
What is Foodtography School?
Created by US food photographer and blogger, Sarah Crawford of Broma Bakery, Foodtography School is an online food photography course aimed at turning your passion for food photography into a business. The course teaches you the relevant photography skills to transform your food photos but also teaches you how to market on social media, reach out to brands and build skills to successfully create your own business.
What are the most common courses?
Foodtography School (completed June 2021)
This is their most popular course and by far my favourite. My friend gave me his old DSLR camera (a Canon 700D/Rebel T5i, a very beginner range model!) in 2019 and when I left my job in April 2021 to pursue my passion with food, I finally dusted off the camera and enrolled in their Foodtography course. I bought their iPhone course alongside and completed that first - because I wasn't convinced I'd ever be able to use the DSLR..!
iFoodtography School (completed April 2021)
If you don't have a DSLR camera and just want to improve your iPhone photography, this was a great introductory course. Broken up into 5 units; Fundamentals, composition and lighting, live styling sessions, editing and restaurant shooting.
Advanced Foodphotography School (currently taking)
I recently enrolled in their advanced course which dives more into photography structure, advanced placement principles, advanced styling and editing, cohesive branding and more on the business side.
How long does Foodtography School take to complete?
Foodtography school, their most popular course is broken up into 7 units. It's recommended to complete 1 unit each week and the relevant assignments alongside. It took me about 2 months to complete and tempting as it was to storm through it, I'm so glad that I stuck to the 1-per-week guide (see tips, below). You get lifetime access to the course online, can work along at your own pace and as it's updated over the years, you'll instantly get access to these updates at no extra cost.
Fundamentals of photography
- Foodtography School course also includes 3 live styling sessions (pasta, pie, brownies), product styling and assignments for each unit.
How much is it?
Foodtography School charges in US Dollars and their single payment is $587.
As a graduate affiliate, Foodtography school have given me a 15% off discount code to share for 15% off all of their courses (which is what I used when I first signed up!). Use discount code: LORDLUCY when enrolling at this link.
This code can be used storewide across all courses and brings the Foodtography School course down to $498.95 USD, which is what I paid. This is their highest level of discount (except for Black Friday where they offer 25% off everything!)
Discount codes can't be applied on any payment plans.
To view all their courses, bundles and prices, click here.
Before & Afters
Here are some of my before photos (in 2020 using an iPhone) and afters (2021, using my friend's old Canon DSLR - after completing the Foodtography School course).
Chocolate chip banana bread
Mushroom & thyme risotto
Butternut squash linguine
Here are some of my iPhone photos after completing the iFoodtography and the Foodtography course.
Here are some of my current photos using (still my friend's old!) DSLR after taking the Foodtography courses.
As I've been adding new recipes and updating old photos with new and improved ones, I've noticed a huge jump in post views, brand engagement, website reach and people interacting and making the recipes - which is after all, my goal when it comes to sharing recipes - to get other people to create and enjoy them!
Start before you think you're ready! It took me 4 years of procrastinating to start this website and Supper Club (which I finally launched in January 2020) and it took me 3 full years of following Foodtography school on IG (2018) before I enrolled into Foodtography School. I think a common set back (for me anyway) is that we always wait until we're "ready" or "good enough" to start something. That day never comes and shifting my perspective onto focusing on learning, progressing and growing has definitely helped me overcome my own self-limiting beliefs and actions and get out of my own way.
Take notes. It seemed like such a huge amount of money for something that I wasn't sure would ever pay off, so I treated it like being back at University. I took lots of notes on each module and watched a few back several times. (The course paid for itself within the first month of me completing the course).
Don't rush. Commit to one module per week and putting everything you learn into practice in the week.
Practice. By far the most important tip - practice! Each week get behind the camera and start including new tools and skills you've picked up during each module. I found this so helpful as there's so much information it can be overwhelming, but taking it week by week and practicing at every opportunity allowed me to slowly layer up skills and feel comfortable with each one before adding another to the mix.
Take inspiration. I can't look at a food magazine, recipe book or website now with the same eyes! If I see a photo I love, I'll save it somewhere, bookmark it if it's in a physical book or magazine and ask myself questions like; Why do I love this photo? What style has been used? Composition, light, techniques? What do I see/feel from the photo? How can I recreate this with one of my own recipes?
If you have any more questions on the course and my experience with it or anything else on my own food photography, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . I also really recommend this book which is not related to the course but very helpful to read alongside and further breakdown things like ISO, capturing motion, equipment etc. How to Photograph Food by Beata Lubas (featuring some stunning food photography!)