I’m part of a team of photographers that capture farm and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) produce images for one of our local farms in Provo. This week, I took on the challenge of showing a plethora of produce without it looking out of control for the weekly “In the Bag” shot. The CSA offers a generous amount of produce and while it’s tempting to put everything on display, it sometimes ends up overwhelming the frame. In considering my audience, I’m always aware of the perceptions that while it’s good to show a lot, less can be more. There’s a fine balance between the viewer saying, “Honey, these greens look beautiful, what should we cook this week?” vs. “OMG. Whatever am I to do with all this stuff?”
People sometimes think I’m weird to compare food to people/portrait photography. But every time I work with a bag stuffed with kale, mixed greens, chard, etc. I can’t help but think of a model’s thick and wavy hair getting teased out by the wind. That’s what it’s like working with a bag of unruly greens as you pull out the leaves and try to style them into something reasonable. As an added bonus you need to work fast or they will wilt into a mess. Like many things, waiting until the last minute to bring your greens to the set keeps them looking fresh. And, a spray bottle for touch ups works great. Maybe that’s not so different than hair after all….