FAQS

Here are the answers to frequently asked questions. If you have a question, ask us!

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What is the difference between editing and retouching?

Light editing is always free. This involves taking the high-resolution image from the raw file state and optimizing it for values, color, clarity, and framing/cropping. Most photos that we shoot only need light editing. We work to alert you about potential problems while we are shooting. 

Retouching involves using Photoshop to change the appearance of a photo. This is done if a major change is needed. Some examples include removing electrical cords or outlets from events, disguising an exit sign, cleaning a dirty window, cleaning up scratched metal, removing an iron arm from an oven, or removing finger prints and dust. Retouching is offered at our hourly rate. It is not very expensive and it can make all the difference in the final product. 

How do you style my shots? 

We always ask our customers what they prefer for an artistic style. We visit their website to understand their brand. Most of the time we see all of the best points of our customers' businesses and we make them shine with dynamic colors, props, and the ingredients that they use. It is always a creative and collaborative process. We work hard to create your best style that tells your story. We also excel with action or process shots like this coffee photo. 

Styling is one of our best features about our food photography  because most of our clients have a budget and are busy serving their customers and need a photographer who can style the food. Although we always love working with a stylist and artistic director, too. 

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Do you shoot at my restaurant or in your studio? 

We almost always shoot a restaurant menu at a customer's restaurant. The reason is that a restaurant makes their own food like no one else. And the whole idea is to show what you serve and how you serve it. You would be surprised at how we can fit our travel studio into a small area. We have built photography tables in the kitchen and we have squeezed our set into a small storage room. Of course we can also take up a lot of space and create two or three styling tables to be more efficient. 

We shoot product photography in our studio or at your location. We can make a style that reflects your brand and makes you really stand out. 


How many items can you shoot in an hour or a day?

The answer always depends on how many items you can make! On average you can expect to get around 10-12 shots per hour if we are using the same set. The artistic style and cooking time always dictate the amount of time needed. It is good to strike a balance between styling, keeping it neat, and going at a steady pace. One customer always keeps his shoots to 2 or 3 hours and he concentrates on getting one type of food done. This fits very well in his busy day. We are happy to accomodate your schedule. 

What is the best time of day to shoot? 

The answer is when you and your crew are available and have the time. We never recommend trying to shoot during a busy period. The beginning of a shift works the best because everyone is fresh. But the period of time between lunch and dinner is also good. We are happy to help you determine the best time for you. 

When do I get my photos?

We try to turn the photos around in a day or two. Large shoots or shoots that require a lot of retouching will take a little longer. You can request faster service on priority images. 

What if I have a graphic designer who needs the photos?

That is great we are always happy to work with designers. We provide you a link to your gallery so you can share it with all of your creative service personnel. 

I am the creative buyer or social media director. Will you help me talk to my client?

Sure! We are very happy to collaborate with everyone on the team!

We want to use the photos for our website and we want to use them to make big signs. Can we do both?

Yes. We can output the photos for web and social media along with large printed files that go up to billboard size! We shoot with a very high resolution camera and top quality prime lenses. 

Do you have props? 

Yes we do. We make our own custom backdrops, and have a carpenter make us hand made boards. We have lots of dishes and artsy serving utensils. And we are happy to find and use the best ones that you have on hand so the photos have your special look and feel. 

How should we organize our shoot?

We have an excel file we can send to you or we can put it on our google drive for the entire team. We always recommend listing all of the items you want to shoot in the order of priority with comments on the style. This always makes a successful day because you and your culinary staff know exactly what to do. And we know what we need to style and shoot ahead of time. 

Have more questions?

Contact us!



Call 415-935-3591 | Studio@ExpressionFood.com | All images © Expression Food