Behind the scenes: food styling and photography

Behind the scenes: food styling and photography

Carla, Monika and Stefan make FOOBY look good enough to eat

Whether a recipe inspires us to replicate it is usually determined by a first glance at the associated recipe photo. Good food styling and appealing food photography are an art that begins with prop selection. For the autumn edition of FOOBY magazine, food stylists Carla and Monika are working hand in hand with photographer Stefan. Once they are happy with the styling of the dishes, the photographer must be on hand immediately. But it is only on the computer screen that the finishing touches are put on the photos, which ultimately ensure that nobody can resist.

Video on the design of the FOOBY magazine.

It's a little like figure skating: something that looks easy and effortless demands the utmost professionalism. And when food photos look so gloriously laid-back and appetizing, you can be sure that they are the work of experienced artists. Before production starts, the FOOBY editing team first defines the themes to be included in the next magazine. And the styling of the magazine is left in the capable hands of their food stylists. Friendly Carla gives us a glimpse of her "cabinet of curiosities".

FOOBY style from the cabinet of curiosities

Here, she reveals to us a treasure trove of props, from which she selects a few to take along to the upcoming shoot. We are amazed by the sheer number of wooden backdrops and angled surfaces that perfectly complement the FOOBY style.

Carla also surprises us with how adept she is at picking out exquisite, vintage-style ceramics and silver cutlery, before carefully wrapping them in paper and lovingly stowing them in her large transport box for the shoot. From the props selected, we slowly gain an impression of how Carla envisions the photographic interpretation of the recipes.

On the set, we meet food photographer Stefan and food stylist Monika. They are fully prepared for the shoot. Monika has an image in mind for each dish, so she has brought along an abundance of glasses, jars, bowls and cake plates, which are now piled up on the tables. One thing is immediately apparent: today, it's all about baking.

At the shoot, we discover the interplay between food styling and food photography and are impressed by how focused and intuitive the team is in its work. There's a lot of off-the-cuff testing out on set, as the FOOBY team is open to discovering new images by chance. It becomes clear that, in artistic work, not everything can be planned in advance.

The change of visual style in food photography has happened over the past few years. FOOBY has got it spot on at the moment.

Stefan Schmidlin

Looking over the shoulder

Once the photos are in the bag, the work process continues. Stefan lets us look over his shoulder while he is editing the images. And we're impressed when he shows us on the screen how he tweaks the colours, lighting moods and contrast of the images until the pictures are completely polished.


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