Want to practice photography all day? Get yourself some wax foods. No, not actual wax foods like grandma used to have in the fruit basket on her dining room table.
When we reference “Wax Foods” here at The Bite Shot Studio we’re talking about a food that can be used for a demo or a practice photography session. They’re actually real foods that can sit on set for a long time and don’t require any “fluffing” or additional styling. They’re beautiful right out of the box and stay that way for hours.
For example, we were setting up to film a YouTube video demonstrating a lighting technique and needed a wax food. On the shot list for the video we included grapes as the subject. Not only are they beautiful but they take zero effort to prepare. They will look the same throughout the shoot no matter the temperature in the room or how long the shoot takes.
Want to know our favorite go-to “Wax Foods?”
Citrus – just a few lime wedges can create some fun food photos, but it can also be fun to add other colors going for lemons, limes, grapefruits and oranges.
Tomatillos and Gooseberries – they’re related! The papery husk on the outside has an especially beautiful texture.
Heirloom Tomatoes – both whole as well as sliced, their unique shape and colors make them a personal favorite.
Grapes – I get extra excited when I see unique colors and sizes of grapes like the mini champagne grapes.
Chips & Salsa – perfect for photography and then for a snack after! Have you noticed they’ve been popping up a lot on my TikToks recently? That’s because they’re great for long shoot days when I need to make a lot of content!
Pears – the classic fruit for still life imagery. I especially enjoy capturing the beauty of the brown Bosc pears with the velvety skin.
Radishes – I always keep an eye out for ones with green and leafy tops, as if they’ve just been picked from the garden.
Artichokes – I get especially excited when the purple varieties show up in the produce section of my local grocery store.
Nuts – both in the shell and shelled.
Pickles – pickled cucumbers whole, sliced, spears, are all fun, but also more unique pickles like pickled red onion, okra and beets create opportunity for capturing bold colors.
Herbs from the Garden – I’ve lost myself in photographing a single leaf of basil before. But you can also capture them in bunches, in bowls, displayed in a vase, or on a cutting board.
Dry Pasta and Grains – unique shapes and textures are especially fun like cavatappi and purple barley.
Spices – whole spices like anise, nutmeg and bay leaves lend toward macro photography and an opportunity to explore tiny details with your lens.
Non-Carbonated Drinks – I had a faux margarita (water and lime juice) hang out on set for six hours last week while I experimented with some new equipment. It looked just a refereshing in the first image as the last.
Coffee – From beans to actual brewed coffee, this is another opportunity to practice beverages and managing reflections in glassware without worrying about the subject wildly changing on you. I also like to use coffee for practicing action shots with the creamer because it’s fairly easy to re-set the scene.
Berries – These, like some of the produce on this list, can tend to look best seasonally. I love it when the strawberries are a juicy red color with vibrant green tops.
When in doubt, think about a Charcuterie board. All those cured meats, cheeses, dried fruits, and crackers are well suited for hours of staying perfectly plated. Photograph them and then enjoy happy hour!
How about you? Any “wax foods” you love to capture that we can add to the list? Visit us in the community and share with us in the Activity Feed!