When it comes to interesting out-of-the-box techniques symmetrical repetition in food photography is definitely the one to look out for.
We often overlook patterns when it comes to food photography techniques. When we hear about patterns, oftentimes we think of monotony. And who wants to be monotonous?
But what if I told you that patterns and repetition in food photoraphy are one of the most beautiful ways to bring interest to our image?
I am just finishing judging a challenge on Instagram all dedicated to repetition and it got me thinking about how you can incorporate repetition in your food photos without making it boring and flat.
So here are a few tips on how to add repetition to your work:
1. Create a feeling of a graphical image
When you have a photo with a very symmetrical repetition and an interesting light you can create images where the pattern itself becomes an element and the point of interest.
You can achieve that by filling the frame with the same or similar elements and place them in very geometrical positions – squares, circles, lines…
2. Repeating lines
Lines are one of the best compositional tools, as I’ve already mentioned in a few of my articles. When you place repeating lines next to each other, they can form interesting visual patterns and can also become very graphical.
3. Breaking the pattern
Monotonous pattern can work very well for certain images, but when you wnat to add some extra interest, you can play around with breakin the patterm.
If every element is placed in the same way and one is placed in a slightly different way, it creates a strong visual interest. This is how we can also bring the unexpected to a pattern. It will instantly led the viewer’s eye to where the ‘rule breaking’ is happening. and instantly you get a focus point!
It also gets the viewer to think about why and how the change in pattern is happening.
4. Repetition in the dish
When it comes to repetition it doesn’t always have to be created through composition. Food itself is already a great source of repetition and patterns. Thinking about the dish as a separate frame and adding some patterns in the dish brings the attention to our subject – because our eyes love patterns, as we’ve already determinded!
So keep an eye on pattern sin your food and also think about how you can add repetition in your dish when you’re styling it.
5. Mirrored image
Just like the name suggest this is a composition technique where the frame has more or less two symmetrical parts of an image. This can create a very calm feeling. A feeling of something we know.
Symmetry can be created either vertically, horizontally, or both.
When I create symmetrical images, I try to not make it completely symmetrical – you know – breaking the pattern! Just like in the image below. It is symmetrical, but not to a point where every element is perfectly aligned.