Behind The Scenes: Professional Food Styling Workshop

The first week in October was a quite literally a dream come true for me as I hosted my first Professional Food Styling Course.

I had been dreaming and then planning the course for more than a year!

It was a lot, a lot, a lot of work! and SO worth every minute of the planning, and sweating, and panicking!

I could not have asked for more eager and enthusiastic participants, each on their own food styling journey; and all so interested, and interesting. I couldn’t have wished for better company for the week.

On top of the fabulous attendees, we were all so blessed by the guest speakers, and guest photographers.

True Love Magazine ‘s Food Editor Tumi Sebopa spoke about her experience working with food stylists, and what an aspiring food stylist can expect when dealing with magazines and editorial commissions.
Photographer Natalie Shelton wore two hats, firstly that of our behind the scenes and editorial photographer ( you can see her lovely pics below) , and also as a former producer for award winning international photographers; she shared her experiences working on multi-million rand campaigns, and what beginner food stylists can expect when working with advertising agencies.

Roelene Prinsloo, our commercial photography expert was undoubtably the star attraction for many of our participants. Roelene is well known for her striking food photography, and has shot campaigns for Ocean Basket, Mugg and Bean, PotatoSA, and almost all of Tiger Brands products. It was such a honour to have her photograph not only with me as part of a commercial food styling demonstration, but each of the participants were given the opportunity to work with her and have Roelene shoot their food set ups, which they could then add to their own portfolios.

Our venue, Light Station Studio in Bryanston, could not have been more perfect! I wanted the attendees to have a very real experience of what working as a professional food stylist is like.
This includes the photographers we work with and also the space in which we work. A professional photographic studio can be an intimidating place for new comers to the industry. I specifically choose Light Station Studio as our venue because it offered not only the experience I was after for the participants , but also because the opportunity for the participants to fully take advantge of having not only expert photographers but the right space and environment for a professional shoot.

What an amazing week it was, I was amazed at how much I learnt from the participants, I left the course more inspired and motivated than I ever expected. It was such an incredible experience to be around a group of like-minded women, more than anything I was blown away by how women in particular can create community.
On the second day after an intensive morning demonstrating tips and tricks of an advertising shoot, the kitchen was pretty messy, it was time for me to tidy up and quickly get on with preparing the lunch before our afternoon session.. I popped to the loo first and when I returned to the studio, all the ladies had jumped in to help, and within 8 minutes, 8 minutes guys! The kitchen was cleared, cleaned, props packed away, and the lunch put out. No fuss, just straight forward no nonsense camaraderie.
It was a beautiful, beautiful thing to not only witness but be the recipient of.

I am busy planning the next workshop, so if you haven’t signed up to my newsletter, jump aboard to be first to hear when the next courses are announced.


The first day was an intensive day of theory, learning, sharing and discussing all there is to know about running a Food Styling business, from quoting, to understanding briefs, to reconciling expenses.
Day 2 involved 2 shoots, one with commercial photographer Roelene Prinsloo, and one with editorial photographer Natalie Shelton
Demonstration of commercial styling for Milkshakes
Roelene setting up lights for our shoot

Light Station Studio in Bryanston was our fantastic studio space, with both an indoor studio for our commercial shoots and a lovely outdoor area for our lifestyle shoots.



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