My Food Storytelling Process Revealed. How to make your audience dream!

My Food Storytelling Process Revealed

In this article, I want to give you an idea of my creative process as well as some of the styling tricks I have used in the past and for this shooting, and that I have already explained a little in my Instagram stories few days ago.

If you instead look for the recipe of this vegan milk bread, please click here!

Also remember I have a fast approaching 1 day brand new workshop in London the 30th of June with Thelittleplantation with still some spaces available. Is a intensive day to learn our creative process and the secrets of styling and story telling of a recipe. Creativity and actionable techniques are at the core of the workshop. We’ll also have an extensively explained editing session.

For who wants to take a deeper look at all things photography styling and social media while taking a break from this busy life, I also have a 3 days retreat the 28th of September in Tuscany with PastaLabTuscany. In a stone village we will take you into a creative jurney and nurish you with Catia’s home made pasta!

close up

close up

larger view of the table

larger view of the table

What is enticing about excellent visual storytellings? I think the answer is a mixture of personal creativity and technical aspects of food photography. So my answer is partial to my taste and my style obviously. But I'm aiming to give you some ideas that you can apply to your own personal likings and photography choices.

My styling strives to be visually consistent in every aspect. I just like the idea of creating a shooting that feels meaningful and well constructed. That avoids confusion for who's looking at the photos because it tells a solid story with clear feelings.

To do so, I keep the color palette consistent and the textures consistent throughout the shooting, and this means I don't suddenly add flowers, different linen or new props that have different colors or textures to the shooting. I often work the recipe directly on the shooting stage to make the process of preparing food more realistic, and you can apply the same concept to your food story even if you don't shoot the preparation, simply with the action of adding nuts or scooping some food out the plate.

This simple trick makes the audience feel connected with your process and your food, more than just looking at your perfect and untouched final recipe. I believe this point s so important also for who talks about nutrition and diet. I always feel more at ease with shots that show how the food is made or enjoyed. It's just more realistic.

My Food Storytelling Process Explained

The other crucial aspect of storytelling is definitely to keep it real. Each of my photos says something interesting about the process or the quality of the recipe, or a feeling of my rustic style.

For example, my hands pressing the dough or the sweet sticky sauce running out the roll give you an idea of how fluffy sweet and milky this milk bread is. Not often vegan recipe can achieve this delicious billowy consistency, so it is crucial to display this quality here.

Down here you can see to passeges of basically the same action. Cutting the rolled dough into rolls creates the idea of how much abundance this recipe makes and again makes you feel all the sticky white puffiness of this amazing bread.

My Foood Storytelling Process Explained
My Food Storytelling Process Explained

Two stages of the roll making that shows how milky is the filling and how soft is the rolled dough, they are a bit redundat to my opinion but help give a good idea of how to cut and arrange to cinnamon buns to someone that has never made this recipe before.

So I tried to create two steps different from each other that are both interesting to look at!

My Foood Storytelling Process Explained
how to compose salvialimone.jpg
salvialimone shooting food.jpg
My Food Storytelling Process Explained

This recipe storytelling came out with a lot of flat lays, I'm happy with the result, but I would advise to include in the photoshooting a combination of wide and narrow photos and photos with different angles to give dynamism to the whole visual story. Here the human element really helps to provide some diversity among the flatlays.

I like to include my hands in the storytelling. It helps you connect with my story. Again I try to be realistic, including actions that would be genuinely part of the recipe development. My hands are held more graciously than in reality, and I'm careful they always look elegant, also I'm careful they never overcome the food.

See below a shot that works, and a shot that doesn't work regarding including hands in the picture.

salvialimone copy.jpg
salvialimone styling don'ts.jpg
silvia bifaro