In the final year of my evening class photography, a large part was dedicated to food photography. I still remember vividly the teacher explaining about angles to photograph food: shoot from the “fork’s viewpoint”, otherwise you loose perspective.
That must have been around November 2011.
We had to make food shots ourselves, and the perfectionist I am, I bought Helène Dujardin’s ‘From plate to Pixel’ and loads of magazines, cookbooks etc.
I seldom cook, but it might well be that some chefs don’t have as many cookbooks as I do… And indeed, apart from some of Dujardin’s shots, there was rarely a shot taken from above.
The fork’s viewpoint, that was it!
A few months later, I was introduced to i-Phoneography (mainly thanks to Kim Klassen) and Instagram.
The first thing that struck me was the enormous amount of “feet” shots. Feet with cups in front of them, naked feet, big feet, cute baby feet, feet “from where they stood” … I had never seen so many feet-modeling in my life! And I thought: what the…? What is this? Have all those i-Phone owners turned into Feet fetishists? And what happened to those so called photography rules: “don’t put your subject in the middle” (Huh! All those feet were bang in the middle of the shot); “make sure you picture a ‘complete’ person”, by which was meant: he or she has 2 hands, 2 feet, a face etc… Another “huh!” It seemed like all I found were feet, just feet…
Same happened with pictures of food. I found the very Helène Dujardin on IG, and guess what… yep! Almost all shots taken from above, smack on top of the precious food! And… I thought it looked/looks great!
Almost immediately, I gladly joined the “i-Feet”-club, and I also make food shots from above and pictures from “where I stand” and am loving it. I even bought a special stool to stand on, in order to get “high enough” to get on top of the action.
And I wonder, would all this Feet-Photography and Shooting from Above have happened without the existence of the i-Phone (or smart phone in general)?
Did those first feet shots happen by coincidence?
Did someone “shoot” him/herself by mistake “in the foot” and kinda liked what he/she saw?
I guess we’ll never know, but I’m quite sure that the revolutionary invention of phones with super cams, has had a big hand in how the look of photography evolved, including a “feet”-hype…