Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Foodography 1

Oranges are Not the Only Fruit

photograph picture of sharon fruit taken by Andrew Barrow from Spittoon
Photograph by Andrew Barrow


New for 2006, is a fresh challenge geared towards bloggers and internet users interested in photographing food, started by myself and Andrew Barrow from Spittoon.

Unlike other blogging events, the roundup for will take part on Flickr, so you don't even have to have a blog to join in. Each Challenge will last for 6 weeks and will have its own Flickr Group where entries can be loaded, viewed and commented upon.

The Flickr page for the inaugural challenge, Oranges are Not the Only Fruit, can be found here and Andrew's announcement here.

So, what do you need to do to get involved?

1) Join Flickr. (Membership is free) You can then join the Foodography 1 Group and load up your entry.

2) Spend some time thinking about the title of the challenge: Oranges are Not the Only Fruit. How could you express that sentence, creatively, in a picture, using your camera? Ask yourself some questions: How many meanings are there for the word 'fruit'? How many ways could you use the colour orange? What different scenarios can you think of for 'not being the only one'?

3) Try not to be lazy. Meet the challenge head-on. Instead of picking a photo from your personal archives that will fit with the theme, actually go and shoot something specific and unique. The less generic, the more interesting your picture will be.

4) Do not enter if you are afraid of criticism. Part of the reason for setting up this event is so that we can seek to improve our photography. By entering your photograph into please be aware that you are opening yourself up to constructive criticism. Don't be afraid! This is a good thing and you will be welcome to critique others' photos too.

5) If you are technically inclined, include the EXIF data with your jpeg when you upload your picture to Flickr. For me, this happens automatically - see an example here. You might also like to tell us if you used any other software to digitally adjust your photographs after they had been taken.

6) Because we are rounding up on Flickr, it doesn't mean you can't also publish your photograph on your blog. You are, if you would like, encouraged to share the story of your entry with your regular blog readers too.

7) Most of all - make sure you have fun with this project and enjoy using your imagination to produce a compelling image. Try and come up with an idea by yourself, but if you are really stuck you could always look at these pictures for a little extra inspiration.



PS. We plan to have events overlap. So look for the next challenge theme, here at Becks & Posh, in 4 weeks time. In the meantime, you still have until February 12th to upload pictures for this, the first challenge.

Archive Alert! On this date in 2005 we visited Taylors Automatic Refresher at The Ferry Building Location.

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Foodography 1

21 Comments:

  • At 3/1/06 08:07, Anonymous bea at Tartine Gourmande said…

    Oh oh, I love this idea! I am in! Santa Claus gave me a digital food photography book, so I need to study and think think!!! Superb idea! Merci!

     
  • At 3/1/06 08:15, Anonymous kudzu said…

    Do you know the book and film from which your title (Oranges -- etc.) was taken? That might provide an altogether other interpretation for the images. Cheers!

     
  • At 3/1/06 08:37, Anonymous melissa said…

    Fun! Derrick always teases me that Flickr is my blog, so now I can do an event. :-) I put up one of my old favorite photos, but I will try to heed your admonitions to create a new one.

     
  • At 3/1/06 08:42, Blogger Santos said…

    i agree with kudzu--when i saw the flickr title i thought...well, never mind what i thought, but i was clearly thinking about the book when i thought it.

    happy new year to you and your family!

     
  • At 3/1/06 11:19, Blogger Rose said…

    Sam,

    I love that new photograph of you and Fred. It is sweet and lovely.

    Rose

     
  • At 3/1/06 12:18, Anonymous Lenn said…

    Great idea....if only my camera weren't so awful for food photos!

    (everyone blames bad photography on their equipment, right?)

     
  • At 3/1/06 12:19, Blogger Jennifer said…

    Love the book from which the title sprung, and love the idea. Looks like there will be a good amount of eye candy generated from this in the coming weeks... hurray!

     
  • At 3/1/06 15:49, Blogger Rachael said…

    I thought about just emailing you my thoughts, but instead, am posting them for all to see (and you know, ridicule at their leisure)

    Not to seem like a pill or anything, but here is my problem with what you ended up setting up...

    People don't usually have a second chance to take a food picture, so critiquing it just doesn't strike me as overwhelmingly helpful. Or, you know, maybe that's just me. I mean, for someone to say "Lovely, but less sauce next time" doesn't do anyone any good since the food has most likely been eaten, and the scene never to be reproduced. Then again, maybe you will attract fanatics willing to make the same meal day in and day out until it is food porn, but for the most part, I'm just not getting how that can improve anyones snaps. And saying "add water for sheen" or "maybe put it under the broiler to give it some browning" isnt about photography, its about food styling. While I realize many (many) of our sites shots are actually highly stylized (possibly non-edible) food, I dont think thats very much in the spirit of food blogging. Its about styling.

    I love (LOVE!) the idea of (potentially) hundreds of interpretations on a theme, but the actual critiquing of the photos, well, I need more explanation as to how thats helpful. Can you explain further? I admit, I'm feeling air headed about it all. (Or just over intellectualizing. One or the other)

    Just some food for thought...

    Big Wet Kisses,
    Rachael

    (who, you know, is all about stirring the pot...LOL)

     
  • At 3/1/06 18:49, Blogger Andrew said…

    Rachael is your pot orange...?

    You don't have to take the exact same picture again (multiple entries are permitted) just remember what the comments were last time and try (if bad) not to recreate. Looking at others submissions and comments may spark an idea - even in a 'blond' moment or at least a thought of what not to do! By the end of the year we all hope to have Goourmet Traveller (or whatever) knocking on the door for a front page shoot.

    Now Rachael - I am picking up sooo much negativity (say that in a gay, camp way and its much better) - I cant wait to see your knock-em dead submissions!

    you can stop kissing me now...

     
  • At 3/1/06 18:51, Blogger Andrew said…

    PS what's a bloody broiler?

     
  • At 3/1/06 18:53, Blogger Andrew said…

    PPS I havent taken any shots on spittoonextra of something I didn't eat within half and hour or so(cold or not!)

     
  • At 3/1/06 18:59, Blogger sfmike said…

    I'm with Rachael. Anybody says a rude comment about one of my photos and I dismiss them forever as people I don't need to deal with again. I love themes, love collaboration, love individual takes on an idea, but am not thrilled by the competition part. And f--- "constructive criticism." There's only about three people in the world that I trust with that particular phrase, and they wouldn't bother mincing about with the word "constructive." In my experience, "constructive criticism" is usually handled as a bludgeon by people working out their own insecurities.

    Love the orange photo announcing all this.

     
  • At 3/1/06 19:49, Blogger Andrew said…

    well SFMIKE - perhaps the challenge (not competition) isnt for you... but it would be nice if you jumped right on in and gave some thoughts on the submissions so far or on the comments already posted. We are trying to learn and improve...

    Why would you take comments as rude?

     
  • At 3/1/06 20:13, Blogger Sam said…

    hey hey everyone. excellent - a bit of controversy on my blog.
    I am not thrilled by the competition part either (as Andrew well knows). In fact I had forgotten about the competition part completely. Maybe I am subconsciously avoiding it. Maybe we aren't doing that anymore - mayb it was an idea that was discussed. My mind is foggy on that.

    i started a photography club at work (and hey - i work for industrial light and magic - making pretty pictures is our job) and we all found it very useful to have criticism & share ideas for improvement, but we all knew that going in. And we tried to make that clear going in here too. Heck - my own photography has improved because of what I learnt in our work photo club, just check my blog over the last year and the evidence of that fact is plain to see.

    Having said that - I know exactly what my friend Mike means about having an unsolicited comment about his photography being made. This has happened to me twice on my blog and both times i got very upset. And when I mean very, i mean VERY. I didn't show it, but I had a boilng temper tantrum thereafter. I have also had correspodence with another blogger who got equally upset when a similar thing happened to her, so it is quite clear people don't like unabetted critiques of their photos.

    I dont entirely agree with Mike, whose photos are always bloody marvellous anyway. Mike, there are some people who really need or want help and don't mind asking for it. This event is geared more towards those people. I hope that those people will also fight back if they dont agree with what the critics are saying.

    I have added a discussion to the FLickr Page where this issue can be further discussed. Maybe people can request whether or not they want to be critiqued. Obviously different people have very strong feelings one way or another and I am open to discussing solutions to the problem we have clearly created.

     
  • At 3/1/06 21:35, Blogger Kalyn said…

    Well I did sign up for Flickr and I'm not the sensitive type so I don't care if people critique my photos (I'm a total photo novice anyway, so I can use any tips I can get.) I think it will be fun. Even if I don't enter I look forward to seeing the photos.

    Sam, love the new photo of you and Fred.

     
  • At 4/1/06 04:23, Blogger Andrew said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

     
  • At 4/1/06 04:27, Blogger Andrew said…

    I thought we had agreed not to do any sort of competition with this. I thought we were going to perhaps pick 'our favorite photo' from the submissions (I was going to put one on slashfood when finished for example) but the objective is to learn from others essentially.

    I know what you mean by negative comments on your own blog - more of a personal space violation than anything - but Foodography was for criticism. If people, like Mike, think they don't need or wont take kindly to comments then Foodography is not for them. Personally I would love Mike to throw a few comments into the mix even if he doesn't take part himself. I know I have a lot to learn after all I have only had my camera three or four months.

     
  • At 4/1/06 18:34, Blogger mrs d said…

    Ooo, I'm glad to see all the discussion of this here (and over on Flickr). I'm still in internal debate mode about joining the group -- leaning toward it though, enough that I bought something orange at the market today... but I also have some concerns about the level of critique when it veers into the artifice of excessive styling and available equipment/accessories. (ie, what Rachael said. :-))

    Then again, this is me working in less than ideal conditions (tiny kitchen, crap for light, old camera) so I imagine that I may get critiques suggesting I do things that are likely not possible for me to do. (Oh geez, was that pre-emptive please-be-kind-to-me prattle, or what?)

    Anyway, I'll attempt to be brave and join up soon -- can't let that orange food go to waste...

     
  • At 6/1/06 11:47, Blogger Andrew said…

    MRS D - it would be great to have you join in. I am sure you have a decent plate you can style the food on and are able to crouch down or stand on a chair to get a different angle. I have a tiny kitchen too and have to use my desk light as a spot light. I am trying to make alight diffuser with kitchen paper (well I would if I didn't keep ripping it) so anything is possible. I use a chunk of white polystyrene packaging as a reflector too. Have you seen the pics illuminated with a torch? A lot is possible with limited equipment and space.

     
  • At 11/1/06 21:39, Blogger slurp! said…

    this going to be fun & rewarding learning experience! I hope to learn more from the experts out there!

    Thanks to Becks & Posh for starting this. :)

     
  • At 7/3/06 21:17, Blogger Jerry said…

    picture of zoroastrianism
    Declaration of Heaven on Earth!
    picture of zoroastrianism
    Please chant this prayer to recieve heaven on earth:
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    Dearest, greatest, holiest!
    Please give us all, the full heaven on earth!
    I thank you, & I worship you.
    picture of zoroastrianism

     

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