Tag Archives: food photography

The importance of a garnish

The importance of a garnish.

Is not to be underestimated.

Sometimes, I forget to have fresh herbs lying around. Then I cook something very brown, and attempt to photograph it.

And the results are sad.

Like this delicious mushroom that I blogged about yesterday:

It doesn’t look horrid–but can you imagine how much better it would look with a sprinkling of fresh thyme on top?

Let’s use the Photoshop clone stamp tool to move some peas on top. Just pretend they’re herbs.

If you kind of squint your eyes you can get the idea. C’mon–squint up–see the difference?

And this slow cooker teriyaki chicken (side note–not a blog-worthy recipe when all was said and done). It’s a yellow-brown pile of whatsit.

 But if I had remembered the green onions . . .

Food photographers, take note: garnish, garnish, garnish.

Let’s take a positive example in which I remembered the benefit of a tiny leafy green spot: Chicken Parmesan.

Can you imagine how this would have looked without the basil?

Like a pool of white drowning inside a pool of red. The garnish adds dimension, color, contrast, interest. A focal point for the eye to engage what would otherwise be a blob of food. Here–I’ll Photoshop away the garnish so that you can see the difference:


And while we’re using the clone stamp tool, do you mind if I give myself a third eye on my forehead, implant a string of pearls down my nose, and put my eyebrows on my upper lip?

Wow. Très debonair, n’est-ce pas?