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Outdoorphoto Blog » Wouda Interviews International Photographer Alex from A Couple Cooks

Wouda Interviews International Photographer Alex from A Couple Cooks

BEGINNER

Alex and Sonja are a photographer and writer/recipe developer couple who live in Indianapolis, Indiana; they believe in the power of real good food and are passionate about sustainability. They create the recipes together, do the styling together and then Alex takes the photographs of the food and Sonja does all of the writing.

Photograph of Pea Soup with Rye Croutons and Chive Blossoms

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Pea Soup with Rye Croutons and Chive Blossoms

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Boy meets Girl

On their first day of college, they shared their first meal together. Although it was at a cheap Chinese buffet restaurant, it set off a lifetime of meals together! As a teenager, Alex already fell in love with photography and it has been his passion ever since he had his own little darkroom setup in his college apartment. Who knew things would have turned out the way it would way back then?

A Story of Love, Food and Photography

After they got married they found cooking to be a great hobby which they shared. They read lots of food blogs and books as well as participating in a few workshops on food styling and after Alex bought his first DSLR it seemed that combining their love of food and photography to be the obvious route to go. In 2010 they created A Couple Cooks, a collection of recipes and inspiration for healthy and sustainable living. “It has certainly been a learning process, food photography is not easy.”

Alex says that he often tries to recreate the styles of photographers he likes but adds his own personal twist on things. “Through trial and error I learnt a lot.”

Since they do almost everything together it was really cute to know that after the cooking, styling and shooting, they always dig into the food together once they got the shot. “It’s usually cold (or warm) by the time we get to it, but it’s our lunch!”

Photograph of Dark Chocolate Cherry Quinoa Bark

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Dairy Free Chai Waffles with Berry Compote

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Practical Gear

For the photographing of the food, Alex uses his Canon 5D Mk III rotating between 5 different prime lenses. Of the five, he states that the 100mm f2.8 macro is his favourite at the time.

Au Natural Lighting

When it comes to the lighting I was pleasantly surprised to hear that he uses ALL NATURAL lighting. He says that it is frustrating when it is cloudy or rainy but that they’ve learned to work with it and that the results given by the sun’s natural warmth is simply magical for food photography. So, totally worth it. He goes on to add that, “Also, the seasonality of the sun matches the seasonality of the food” which I find to be a really creative way of looking at things.

Photograph of Roasted Nourish Bowl with Lemon Tahini Dressing

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Tortilla Bow Salad with Green Goddess Dressing

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

A Minimalistic Look at Retouching

They do as minimal post processing as possible, using Adobe Lightroom for colour balancing and cropping and then moving on to Alienskin Exposure for a light film emulation effect. They’ve been all over the place trying to find their style but I think they’re doing something right with this minimalistic look and feel they’ve got going right now.

Photograph of Dippy Eggs with Cheese-fried Toast Soldiers

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Toasted Almond Mocha Affogato

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Some Advice for the Foodies

His main advice for foodies, eager to get into photographing food “and food photography isn’t easy” is to practice, practice, practice! Since we eat every day, he suggests that you start taking pictures of your food in different light and different backgrounds to see what works best for you. And when using a Smartphone, he suggests an app like Snapseed to do a little post-processing.

Photograph of Thia Curry Naan Bread

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Burrito Bowl

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Travel

His dream food photography destination has to be Spain. “It offers so many great flavours, wines and cheese throughout the country that would be wonderful to try!”

We wish Alex and Sonja well with their future endeavors and hope our readers have learnt a thing or two about how to take titillating photographs of food. Go check out A Couple Cooks for delicious recipes as well as inspiring food photos:

Photograph of Sweet Potato Soup with Harissa and Greens

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Spaghetti with Tuscan Kale and Chickpeas

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Cherry Buttermilk Clafoutis

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of flourless chocolate almond cakes

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Loaded Huevos Rancheros Tacos

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

Photograph of Loaded Huevos Rancheros Tacos

Photo Credit – Alex (A Couple Cooks)

About the Author:

Wouda McMicken spends her work days as part of the driven Outdoorphoto team. She enjoys photography, especially experimenting with her treasured Nikon Film camera. The privilege of doing interviews with Professional Photographers all over the world is what makes her get up in the mornings, excited for a new day’s work. She is a self-confessed klutz and can be easily bribed with a stylish pair of jeans or good food. Having the ‘need’ for her nails to be neatly painted at all times, fresh jam doughnuts and salted caramel ice cream is her kryptonite. She dreams of a future filled with sunny skies, palm trees and sandy beaches with her Ukulele and a Piña Colada close by.

One Comment

  1. Madeleine July 26, 2016 at 3:39 am - Reply

    Love it.

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