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Food Photography & Lighting – Teri Campbell

Food Photography & Lighting
  • Editor Rating

  • Definitely Worth It
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  • Food Photography & Lighting
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on: October 25, 2013
  • Last modified: November 12, 2013

  • Review Summary:

  • A solid resource for anyone learning how to photograph food, Teri Campbell's book covers both the business behind-the-scenes & the how-to techniques on set he uses to get great images. Directed primarily to those who want to shoot commercially, at this price the book should be a must-buy for anyone with a taste for food photography.

If you have any interest in shooting food, you owe it to yourself to check out this soup-to-nuts guide (ah, fun with food puns, couldn’t resist).

What we like most about this accumulation of Teri’s experience and how-to instruction is the breadth of help. He offers in a simple and easy-to-read manner both very broad guidance – like how to work with major clients – as well as numerous little tips & tricks, such as dipping a slice of cheese in really hot water right before placing it on a burger to give it that perfect melty look. Teri has the chops to back up his advice, too, having shot images for world-class clients, such as: Wendy’s, Procter&Gamble and Kentucky Fried Chicken.

The book is broken into two main sections: he uses about 120 pages on the business of commercial food photography first, covering his typical equipment, the roles everyone plays on set, the process of finding and securing assignments. Teri gets pretty detailed about his own studio and how he refitted an existing building, etc. etc., and that information is probably of little value as everyone’s situation will be different. But, it’s a very small section of a book overflowing with other useful insight.


Then Teri digs into nine shots – 12 if you pick up the three digital extras – and provides a solid review on what went into making each image. While not overly technical, he still manages to include a lot of detail on the techniques he used and WHY he chose them to get the looks he wanted. Now, after the first five or six setups, you start to see some repetition – many of his setups are a little cookie-cutter (again with the puns?). But he clearly found a technique that works (really well) for him and leveraged it into a successful career. And, while some of the setups are very similar, there is still something to be learned in each of his detailed write-ups.

Cover price is about $45, but you can find it on Amazon for $30. Just $19.99 for the Kindle edition. And, as far as food photography training goes, that’s money well-spent. This is a book we’re sure to re-read and reference for a long time.

Have you read this book? Know of others that are even better … or ones that are just plain terrible? Please – Add Your Voice! Write a new review or add your comments. Help other photographers like you find the right training. It’s Karma, man! Tomorrow, maybe you’ll read someone else’s review and save a few dollars.

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