My food photography lighting setup

My brother in foodviz., John (or is it Fred or Stan) asked about my food photography lighting setup

Over the years of this blog and my social media adventure I’ve moved from smartphone to point and shoot to DSLR and mirrorless cameras to shoot photographs of food at home and in restaurants. 

At home I moved from shooting the photographs on the table I eat at, to a buffet with some office lamps for lighting and now to a dedicated setup as you can see in the image below. I have an old wooden table that is at coffee table height, a softbox and a diffuser. From time to time I’ll also use a speedlight (flash) and bounce the light against a wall to get light from two different directions. A tripod is essential. The one I use is a Manfrotto with a central stalk that can be brought up and turned horizontal so that I can shoot overhead over the low table.


With this set up I get reasonable lighting. It also helps that I shoot in RAW and post process with Adobe Lightroom.

One of the things I need to get better at is props. I need to think more about how I set things up on the table as well as choose better angles to shoot from. 


This photograph of today’s lunch was shot on my food photography ‘studio’ 

What is your food photography set up? 

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8 Responses

  1. So you have a diffuser and a box. But you also have loads of natural light there. I dont have that so just told the wife we are moving! Thanks for showing the set up im off to get the stuff!

  2. Its amazing how similar we are! I also progressed from my phone, to point and shoot and now my first DSLR! I also shoot in RAW but I haven’t learned how to process in light room yet!

    I love your set up! You’re lucky to have such beautiful light!

    1. Thank you Natasha. I suggest watching lots of photography YouTube videos. You’ll pick up Lightroom easily.

  3. Thanks for sharing, Gary. Now I know how the pros do food photography 😀 It’s always challenging because you can never predict how food will look on a dish until you plate up. For me, I try to make the food look uncluttered as possible and shoot from a few angles and hope one photo turns out good 🙂

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