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This page supplements our blog posts below:

The LIFEyear Project

Food Photography: capturing the dripping strawberry rhubarb ice-cream

Tips for driving traffic to your photo blog

Adventures in Food Photography: Pears and Light – 1 of 4

Adventures in Food Photography: Salsa and Lenses – 2 of 4

Adventures in Food Photography: Lemon and Textures – 3 of 4

Adventures in Food Photography: Pepper and Macro – 4 of 4


My Photography Equipment

Here is a list of photography equipment I have and will use for the duration of this class.

Camera: Canon Digital Rebel XTi (also known as EOS 400D)
Canon Lens EF 28mm 1:1.8 USM with B+W UV Haze Filter and Canon EW63II Lens Hood
Canon Wide Angle Lens 20mm 1:2.8 USM with B+W Canon EW75II Lens Hood
Canon Macro Lens EF 100mm 1:2.8 USM with B+W UV Haze Filter
Remote Shutter Release: Canon Remote Control RC1

My Lense Trilogy
I did not buy and kit lenses with my camera. Instead I bought the body and a separate 28mm 1:1.8 Canon lens. I was extremely happy with how bright it was and that I never had to use a flash even in low light conditions. I was told by someone that for a beginner it is better to use prime lens and move back and forth to bring the subject closer and further way in the frame rather than a zoom lens when you get lazy and let the camera do the work. I took the advice to heart and and looking back I can see how right this person was. I am so used to using a prime lens that I even when I used my compact camera I forget to use the zoom function and instead move backward and forward to compose the picture.

A year later I bought the wide angle 20mm 1:2.8 prime lens as I was planning a trip the Grand Canyon and felt I would need a lens capable of capturing the wide vistas. Having gotten used to a 1:1.8 it was difficult to use a 1:2.8 since it is not as bright. I ended up using the 20mm on a tripod indoor, hand held on a bright day indoor or hand held outdoors. I also bought a camera bag to hold my camera and two lenses because I didn’t think I would need another lens. It is a great little Lowepro Fastpack 100 backpack which fit all my accessories perfectly.

Again a year later with my interest in food photography peeking I researched the internet to see what is recommended as a good lens for photographing food. All websites said that there is no one good lens for food photography, but a zoom macro is used often to get very blurry backgrounds with sharp foreground focus. I felt that that was the lens to add to my growing collection and hence I bought the 100mm prime.

I can’t possibly thing of any lense that I might want to add.. well, maybe a lensbaby someday! The backpack I had bought would no longer fit my third lens. I recently had to buy a bigger Lowepro Slingbag 200AW.


7 Comments leave one →
  1. Sarah permalink
    March 16, 2010 5:45 am

    Hi there
    I recently bought the Canon xsi…a huge upgrade from the point and shoot i used to have. I’m not much of a photo expert, but i am wanting to take a class/upgrade my lens etc.

    would you recommend the prime lens you have (i think it’s the Canon Lens EF 28mm 1:1.8 USM with B+W UV Haze Filter and Canon EW63II Lens Hood?)

    i’d love any advice, especially for a photo novice….your photos are fantastic!

    • March 16, 2010 7:34 am

      Thanks so much, Sarah! XSi is great.. I drooled over it when it came out and read all the reviews. I like that it has live view capability. I would say that the 28mm 1:1.8 was the best investment I ever made and because it is a prime lens it taught me really good habits, i.e. not relying on the zoom and adjusting my own position to frame a shot. It is really bright so you can easily take hand held pictures indoors without a flash and still not have camera shake. I used nothing but that lens for a year and constantly thanked the professional photographer who recommended it (even though at the time I thought it was a little expensive). Go for it!

  2. Sarah permalink
    March 18, 2010 6:46 am

    oh! that’s awesome – and very exciting. thanks for the advice and i’ll let you know how it goes. in the meantime, i’m going to again drool over the onion relish – you and talia and a perfect team.

  3. April 2, 2010 11:24 am

    Thank you for all of the great info! My biggest challenge seems to be lighting. I don’t know if I need to buy a lighting kit, or if there’s a problem with my camera (Nikon D5000). Any suggestions on lighting equipment.

    • April 2, 2010 2:10 pm

      kp, I am afraid I can’t help you with that yet. I have almost successfully avoided shooting without the sun. I am trying to learn the rules of natural light before I break them with unnatural light. Keep reading.. I’m sure a time will come when I can no longer avoid using strobes!

  4. May 31, 2010 11:42 am

    you have a very cool site. i’ve been considering going organic but its quite expensive here in the philippines.your site inspires me:)

    • June 1, 2010 8:27 pm

      Maybe you can just start with a little organic. Or grow a little of your own food… every bit helps! Glad to inspire you.

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