02. Berries on a wooden board

Often simplicity is best, but how do you form simplicity out of so much confusion and array of colors and sizes. In this chapter watch Anya style this shot from start to finish and see the detail she goes to making the final image look as appetizing as possible.

From preparing the berries, choosing the props and surfaces and testing initial lighting watch as Karl and Anya develop the shot through testing different textures and angles of the surface, deciding the shooting angle and the placing and positioning of berries. Anya also tests out different berry combinations and shows the final berry positioning. On top of that you will also be able to see the final depth of field decisions, shadow fill options and some alternative lighting ideas. All in all learning every single detail of how this shot was made.


  1. Great video, thanks for posting šŸ™‚
    Is there any chance that you could attached any of high resolution hero shots so we can take a closer look at the results you were getting?

    1. Hi Anthony you should get a good idea of the results in the zoomed in pan at the end of the video. If that’s not sufficient I’ll see if we can post a zoomed in crop of the shots on the page to show the detail achieved.

  2. That was Amazing Karl and Anya! Some of the best education on food photography I have ever seen. I love that you went through every little detail to showcase exactly what happens. Great Job!!!

  3. Really good instructional video. You mentioned briefly that you could obtain similar effects from window light; having limited lighting options at the moment, do you have any tips on the natural light approach?

    1. Hi Norman, biggest north facing window you can find and place your subject close to it (north facing to avoid direct sunlight) if it’s south facing and cloudy that’s OK, or you can add diffusion over the window.

        1. You are welcome, thanks for joining and please spread the word and we will keep working to bring you more and more! šŸ™‚

  4. Hi Karl lot to think about, would not have tried this type of shot, so I am going to see what
    I could do , you got me thinking about it , need get bits together and we will see
    thanks so much again
    frank garvan

  5. Hi Karl,

    I really enjoyed watching this video. It’s great to see the process that both you and Anya go through to perfect this shot. Your teaching shows many different and unique ways to use studio lights to create some amazing looks. The lighting set-up to make soft and hard shadows that truly mimic sunlight was brilliant! Can’t wait to try this myself!


  6. Great Tutorial. I’m loving all the courses. In special, what is the spray that Anya is using to clean the board and put some little water drops on the berries? Thank you.

    1. its just water she put in a little spray bottle, you can find those spray bottles at most homeware or catering supply stores (maybe even gardening centres)

    1. Hi Christopher, your local sign manufacturers will have acrylic, in the US it’s called Makralon and it’s also available from wholesale plastic suppliers.

    1. Hi Larry, in product photography or food then it always has to be the hero point, so in this case the berries in the middle of the board. The depth of field is quite shallow but as you will see in the close up image at the end the DOF extends far enough that a good cluster of berries are sharp. In product photography (watches, cosmetics, etc) then usually the DOF is a lot more.

  7. Thank you Karl and Anya. This is the best course I have ever seen. I’m Italian and I never found a good food photography course in Italian. You helped me to realize that I didn’t really know anything about food photography šŸ™

  8. Hi, is it possible to know where I could find the two sides background Anya uses I this video? Thank you a lot!

    1. Hi Micaela, I beleive she has a woodwork shop make these for her. I often find old table tops from second hand furniture stores.

  9. Sorry Karl …. another question …. but you didn’t do any post-production on this image? I mean saturation, contrast, spot removing

  10. Absolutely fantastic video!! I am just looking to get started in food photography, and have recently purchased 2 x Neewer 460 LED panels. I got these as I need good portability, but they are very bright (even at the dimmest setting), so could you recommend the best way to diffuse the light a bit?

  11. May i ask ? i know this video is for learning purpose and good job by that, but how long it takes to make this kind of photo if it was for a payed job ?

    1. Hi Alexandru, I’d be planning on 4 hours for something like this. But it could be done in less with experience.

  12. Great Tutorial Karl. Iā€™m loving your courses. I have a question concerning your camera settings: When you proceed to the shots, you’re constantly in manual focus or automatic? or do you first auto focus on a point of the product after you immediately switch to manual to block your focus then you shoot?
    Thank you in advance for your answer.
    Andrew from FRANCE

  13. Really enjoyed this, learned a lot that I thought I knew. I was wrong, going to try it this weekend.

  14. Thank you Karl and Anya. This is great alloy of food stylist and light master. Your work with light makes me feel same as I got from Igor Sakharov workshops last autumn. The amount of work over details is the difference between nice and great photo.

  15. Hi Karl, this was a really good tutorial. It would be really good if you could attach one image from each new light setup you did in the end. I never saw a side by side comparrison in lightroom, only maybe a small flickering. I like to have them side by side and analyze them to see in detail what huge impact your small attribute did.


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