Sides don’t get enough attention in photography. People always tend to focus on the entree and the sides get the short end of the stick. Plenty of side dishes can be just as photogenic, and that’s what people should try to enjoy. The side dishes are really what will make the meals a lot of the time since people aren’t going to be able to fill up on the main courses only. People should be able to appreciate all parts of the meal, and that includes coming up with lovely photographic tributes to them.
One of the prettiest sides that anyone is going to find anywhere is a salad. Salads are beautiful, especially if they have a lot of fruit. Salads even without fruit can be lovely to look at though, particularly before people add on the dressing.
Pretty much any side dish that is heavy on the vegetables can be really pretty to look at since people have a tendency to do a lot of art that features vegetables anyway. A still life in nature is really beautiful. A still life on a plate made with natural items is going to look just as lovely. Grilled vegetables on and off of a skewer can both be just as lovely to look at when photographed in the right light.
Basically, you also have to think in terms of the sides that aren’t going to look as photogenic. Almost any side dish that is really lumpy or really pasty is not going to work. Mashed potatoes are not photogenic even if you try to make sure that the gravy has been distributed really well. Sweet potato wedges are much prettier, especially if they are aligned well and given a glaze or something to do with pepper.
Some sides are a little bit trickier. For one thing, rice has a tendency to look like a great big mass without really having the color and the texture that people would associate with pretty food pictures. Quinoa actually can be really pretty to look at, though. Some types of rice pilaf can actually look really pretty if they have a lot of different pretty ingredients mixed in with the rice, like fruit. You have to make sure that the rice is not the only thing in there and that there is more to look at, and from there, you can end up with a nice picture of rice.
Soup is a side dish that can actually look appealing, even though it really doesn’t seem that way at first. You can make soup look warm and homey if you put in a simple sprig of parsley and put the soup in a nice bowl with a shiny ladle. If you add a fireplace to the background with the soup, you automatically create the impression of heart and home.
Creating great photographs with side dishes is often about striking the right note. Some side dishes make you think of really great summer days. Others make you think of Thanksgiving days with the family. Other side dishes can make people think of their birthdays. There are lots of different ways to enjoy food and lots of different instances where the food looks great and is great. You just have to find a way to get the mood right when it comes to the picture.