On April 17th and 18th, our food styling and photography workshop took place in Vienna. After more than 6 months of preparations, I finally met Meeta K. Wolff and Jeanne Horak-Druiff the day before the workshop again. In 2014, I attended myself a food styling workshop hold by them in beautiful Italy and since back then I wanted to arrange something similar in Vienna.
As the host, I was responsible for preparing the food and of course, wanted to spoil out attendees with some traditional Viennese cuisine. For breakfast, I baked two of my favorite pastries for them: FlowerPower Gugelhupf with lemon glaze and poppy seed raspberry cupcakes (recipes will follow).
For the first day, we rented a kitchen called Die Pause at the Spittelberg where we could teach, style, cook and shoot the whole day. We started quite early in the morning and had a long and intense day fully packed with photography theory, styling sessions – and of course food. There were several short presentations about the following topics so our participants could learn everything they need for their own shootings in the afternoon and on the second day:
- Photography Fundamentals (Mastering your camera & understanding the basics like shutter speed, aperture, ISO, exposure, white balance, shooting on manual)
- Photography Techniques (Natural light techniques, getting a sharp focus, color & texture)
- Styling Fundamentals (Composition and placement, creating a mood/atmosphere, the right props, color, texture etc.)
- Restaurant/low-light photography and post-processing your low-light images
- Enhancing your images (Basic Lightroom techniques)
- Pushing Photoshop
For the whole workshop, we divided our participants in groups of two and every group had the same 4 assignments to master within the workshop: an action-shot, a restaurant-shot, a cover/editorial-shot and an on-location-shot. Besides, we had 2 competitions prepared for them together with our wonderful sponsors Cuisinarum and Neni:
At the Cuisinarum competition, our participants should style and shot either a sweet or a savory tart I prepared for them. The gorgeous porcelain tart pans were also the prizes for the three lucky winners.
The Neni competition took part on the second day, directly at Neni am Naschmarkt. There our participants should put their amazing dishes in the right light and also capture the great familiar atmosphere at their restaurant. The first prize was the new Neni cookbook and second prize was a Neni spice package.
On the second day, we arranged a field trip to the famous Naschmarkt. There our participants could work on their assignments, and shop at the Vienna Vintage Market for props and enjoy the food market. In the meanwhile Meeta, Jeanne and I took our deserved break and enjoyed the delicious fresh fruits and vegetables framed by the wonderful Jugendstil architecture around the Naschmarkt.
For lunch, we all met again at Neni am Naschmarkt – our incredible host for that afternoon. They spoilt us with oriental food and sinful desserts which was not only rich in taste but also gorgeous served. Since there was a separate room reserved for our group we were free to shoot as we liked.
Afterwards, we went back to the hotel where our participants had time to complete their assignments and process their photos. At the end of our second day, every group presented their 4 images and received professional feedback on their work. I was very impressed what our participants achieved within our workshop – very well done!
Sadly, time flies and so we already reached the end of two intensive but wonderful days. After a last glas of Rustico Prosecco it was time to say good-bye. Thanks and congratulation to all our participants who did an amazing job: Nour | Claudia | Sylvia | Martina | Nuriel | Gabriella | Daniela | Helen | Rosa – I hope we stay in touch!
And of course many thanks to Meeta and Jeanne – without you this would not have been possible!
Last but not least, special thanks to our lovely sponsors Cuisinarum, Neni, Nino Franco, Sonnentor and Stauds.