NYTimes Photographer Andrew Scrivani Shares Tips for Food Photography

by Andie Mitchell on June 14, 2011

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“If the images that come out of your camera don’t come out like you see them in your head, you have to work harder.”

- Andrew Scrivani

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New York Times photographer Andrew Scrivani came to Seattle to lead two four-hour long workshops. The events were hosted by my dear friend and Seattle Bon Vivant, Myra. I walked into the class with only my Canon Rebel, one hell of a gnarly cowlick, and a fuzzy understanding of what makes food pictures evocative.

Andrew’s got a background in teaching and, really,

it showed.

His presence was commanding. He spoke about taking photographs like I might talk about eating teeny tiny cupcakes while watching Leonardo DiCaprio in [any] film: blissfully.

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Andrew is one of those people with such passion for what he does that you can’t help but feel injected with inspiration. You’re immediately unsure of your own career path, your hobbies, and what exactly it is that you’ve been doing with that camera for the past, oh I don’t know, five months?

He’s genuine. He’s true to his own artistic intuition and style. He takes the kind of food photographs I’d like to make


Here are just 15 of the valuable tips he taught me.

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Tossed Salads and Scrambled Eggs June 14, 2011 at 10:44 pm

I concur and it was lovely to meet you!


Johnny June 15, 2011 at 2:08 am

I think you payed attention! You have the heart and soul for this! Your pics have always captivated me! :)


Lauren at Keep It Sweet June 15, 2011 at 2:41 am

Going to check out those tips but can’t stop staring at that whipped cream/strawberry concoction at the moment!


stephanie June 15, 2011 at 3:57 am

Haha… was about to write the exact same thing! Gorgeous picture!!! Makes me want to run to the store A.S.A.P!!!!!!
Can’t wait to move to my new house with much more lighting, and buy some nice crops for picture taking…. yum!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat June 15, 2011 at 5:23 am

I think your photos are always beautiful Andie, and it’s clear that you’ve taken Andrew’s advice. I’m bookmarking your foodista post!


Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers June 15, 2011 at 5:57 am

Thanks for sharing the tips. Now, if only I had a good camera…


Andrew Scrivani June 15, 2011 at 5:58 am


Your comments are the best kind of thanks and a powerful motivation for me to continue to do things like workshops. Your photos here are exactly why it’s so worth it for me. They are beautiful. So well done. Thanks, Andie. Speak with you soon.



The Café Sucré Farine June 15, 2011 at 6:08 am

Thanks for sharing these great tips!!


Kelly June 15, 2011 at 6:29 am

Now this is a post I NEED…my pictures always blow!! haha!


tina @ vanillandspice June 15, 2011 at 7:07 am

Your pictures are always gorgeous! Thanks for posting the tips :)


Denise June 15, 2011 at 7:19 am

Your pictures always amaze me. It must be pure inspiration and know-how on your part.


Megan (Braise The Roof) June 15, 2011 at 8:55 am

This makes me want a DSLR so badly! Yes, I know, I know, I can take nice pictures with my point and shoot, but it’s not the same! ;) What a great opportunity to sit in on those seminars!


Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio June 15, 2011 at 10:35 am

Yumm Yumm!


Gina June 15, 2011 at 11:48 am

How FUN! Your photos are always beautiful! I would love to sign up for a few photography workshops! Any suggestions on where to look for stuff like this?!


Shelley June 15, 2011 at 12:16 pm

amazing. i think food photography is gorgeous (obviously) and its interesting to hear about it from a professional perspective.


Karriann Graf June 15, 2011 at 1:04 pm

So great to have found this! Photography tips are always more than welcome in my home. Headed to check them out now. Happy Cooking!


Parita June 15, 2011 at 4:26 pm

I can’t wait to get a SLR so I can put these tips to use! I try my best with my point and shoot…but it’s just not the same!


Jessica @ The Process of Healing June 15, 2011 at 6:55 pm

All I can say is GORGEOUS photos!!!!


Brittany June 15, 2011 at 9:30 pm

I love these tips..my pictures come out mediocre most of the time. I love to look at pictures of food BECAUSE they look so good from the photograph. I must practice some of this advice!


Halley June 18, 2011 at 11:07 pm

Wow. Food photography can be quite tricky but all of your pics look amazing Andie. You’ve got talent.


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