Saturday, March 31, 2012

For the Love of Plates

This post is for fellow food photographer Em Thomas, who confessed on Twitter that she is a "food prop junky."

Oh yes. I know exactly what she means. I never used to give two cents about the 'kitchenware' aisle until I started doing food photography. Now I can't pass up a Crate and Barrel or Williams-Sonoma without dropping a chunk of cash on some interesting glasses or some fancy flatware.

Unfortunately, dinnerware can be very expensive if you buy it at such places. That's why I try to check out places like Ross and TJ Maxx for some good bargains. I can usually score a set of plates for $3-4 a piece. CostPlus World Market usually has a sale bin, and I've gotten great deals on napkins and platemats that way.

I also check out the local thrift stores for funky or interesting items. Though that's a bit more of a crap shoot - and a lot of the stuff you see is just junk - if you are persistent, you can make some great finds. I found the black rectangular plate (below) for $0.99 at the local Salvation Army. Antique stores are another way to find 'vintage' items.

One down side of all this that you have to store all of these plates and glasses. I have an entire closet in my house devoted to nothing but dishes. And I have several drawers filled with silverware and napkins just for food photography. The photo below shows just a small portion of my 'collection'.

It can be a real problem. Ultimately going to have to move everything out to the garage just so that we have room to hang our clothes.

There is no end to the interesting colors, shapes, and sizes of plates and dishes and salt shakers and forks and sauce bowls and...

I guess that's part of the collecting 'problem'. There's always something new and different that would work just perfectly with this dish or that. One of the addicting things about collecting this stuff is that each item you get gives a different feel to the food that is placed in it.

Doing food photography has given me a real appreciation for the things we serve food in, and has made me a certified food prop junkie.

1 comment:

  1. Holy Moses - a prop closet! I only have a teeny little section of a kitchen cabinet right now... this is inspirational! :D