fruit in a margarita glass on white background
When Cynthia Farr-Weinfeld, 42, of Portland, ME, first started doing food photography in 2008, she quickly learned how to improvise with thrifty gear. Her home studio, where she shoots both for Portland Monthly and for the agency Stock Food, was until recently her kitchen table and a few cheap backgrounds and accessories—including 16x24-inch foamcore boards she bought from an art supply store for about $1.50 each. When she saw our April 2010 Photo Challenge to shoot a still life using only indirect light and a reflector, Farr-Weinfeld says, “I started coming up with all kinds of ideas.” Searching for subjects in her kitchen, she found this margarita glass. “I thought an orange drink would make it an interesting color combination.” After chopping up fruit, she brought out her white foamcore. “I placed one board on the kitchen table and one against the wall to make the white seamless background,” she explains. She set up another piece of foamcore at an angle to bounce the morning sunlight streaming through her kitchen door onto the glass. With the lighting right, she rearranged the fruit for
better visibility. Using her tripod-mounted Pentax K20D up close with a 50mm f/1.4 Pentax lens, she set a long shutter speed. This winner was exposed for 3 seconds at f/11, ISO 200. “It may be really basic equipment,” Farr-Weinfeld says, “but it does the trick.” See more of her work at—Lori Fredrickson. Cynthia Farr-Weinfeld