Carolina Bed and Breakfast

The Kitchen Garden

Notes, recipes, and thoughts of an innkeeper

Food Photography at the Carolina Bed & Breakfast

Posted on by Susan Murray

What a mess!

“What’s that mess?” I can hear you saying.  That mess is what happens when you have a food photographer in your kitchen!  We are updating our website at the Carolina Bed & Breakfast and we want pictures which better reflect the type of food we serve at our Asheville inn. When we first bought our B&B in Asheville, we were overwhelmed with running the inn and bringing it up to our standards.  We had not really thought about the food other than it needed to be good.  But over time we have developed a point of view which reflects our backgrounds and tastes and is, we think, unique among the inns of Asheville.

We found Erin Adams through our friends at Farmer and Chef South. She impressed us right away with her words about our food: food that reflects the inn.  It is modern, light, fresh and international.   She also has an impressive list of clients ranging from Southern Living Magazine to Myer’s Rum so we were excited to see how she would capture us through her photography.  (Please note that all of the pictures in this blog were taken by me!  You will have to wait a bit to see Erin’s work.)

Erin and I sat down together a few weeks before the shoot to choose the “menu” for the shoot.  We chose some traditional B&B foods (Belgian Waffles) and some less traditional (Yogurt Panna Cotta).  I also wanted to be sure to get some good photos of our evening reception as we believe the range, quality and innovation of our canapes is one of the things which sets our inn apart.

Vanilla Yogurt Panna Cotta with Fresh Strawberry Puree

Vanilla Yogurt Panna Cotta with Fresh Strawberry Puree

So I set to work.  Baked goods were made and frozen, ready to be used on the day, but the vast majority of the prep work needed to be done the day before.  By the time Sara (our Assistant Innkeeper) and I were finished our fridge looked like it was the middle of the October high season instead of the slow winter days.  And I was up early in the morning in order to be ready when Erin arrived at 9 AM.

I recently read a really good article with tips about food photography for inns from Jumping Rocks Photography.  While much of it pertains to choices that will be made by your photographer, there is a great youtube video on How to Take Better Foodie Photography with Your IPhone.  One of their tips was that food photographs better at room temperature so one of the first things I did was to unload the contents of my refrigerator onto the island.  Thank goodness for the island!

Everything came out of the fridge!

Everything came out of the fridge!

It was a long day and fascinating day. And  I did learn one thing which I kind of already knew. Food is like people: some of it looks great but is only so-so, and some of it looks so-so but is fantastic.  “Make-up” and fancy angles can only do so much.  Ultimately it is in the taste.  I am excited to see how the pictures turn out but I know it’s not the picture that counts!

Capturing the essence of our Poached Pear

Capturing the essence of our Poached Pear

 

 

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