Austin has a lot going for it: a vibrant community, great music, and amazing food. As a city that values its thriving art scene, it’s no surprise that there are some amazing photographers working in Austin, too. With well-developed styles and a keen eye for detail, the food photographers on this list will leave you stunned. Oh, and most likely hungry. Enjoy the work of some of the best food photographers in Austin; get ready to be inspired.
And if you’re a photographer looking for a new venue to stoke some inspiration, why not check out Peerspace? As the largest online marketplace for hourly venue rentals, we have hundreds of stunning spaces in Austin alone. Check out what we have available near you! And of course, keep reading to discover our favorite Austin food photographers.
Ashleigh Amoroso’s accomplishments in the photography industry are impressive. In fact, she’s worked with a number of high-profile clients, including Target, Mashable, and McCormick. We also think her food photography is some of the best in the business.
In addition, her use of high-contrast lighting calls attention to the details of the intricate dishes she’s photographing. And many of her images feature elements of motion — dripping syrup, juice squeezed from a lime, sifted sugar powdering a meal. Her even color toning shows the vibrancy of the dishes without ever overwhelming the viewer. The images evoke a sense of comfort and familiarity and easily make Ashleigh one of the best food photographers in Austin. On her website, you’ll also find education tools she designed to inspire her fellow shutterbugs.
Richard Casteel is a passionate food photographer who has been featured in renowned publications like Food & Wine, Southern Living, and Oprah Magazine. His artistic approach to food photography results in warm, homey images that highlight the intricacies of a dish. At the same time, this style makes his images feel familiar.
Richard establishes a strong sense of place with his sets. He also works to draw us in and makes perfectly presented dishes feel more accessible. His use of color also complements his warm, contrasted lighting, helping to show off the individual details of the food.
Like many of the best Austin food photographers, Shelby Tsika’s work emphasizes composition that creates a connection between viewer and food. Bright, neutral backgrounds and strong lighting show the intricacies of a dish and put its colors on full display. In particular, her macro work reveals the beautiful details of the food spreads, zeroing in on the most aesthetically interesting parts of the dish. This balance between wide, middle, and macro shots also gives her portfolio versatility.
We also love how she describes her ethos: “Food has always been my love language. I have shot everything from Michelin Star restaurants and Master Sommeliers to home-town bakeries and local eateries. I believe good food is an art, and worthy of being represented as such. [Plus]I really have a deep desire to capture that for my clients”
Karli Isiyel offers a number of design services for restaurants, but a central component of her package is food photography. Her work pays close attention to organization and compositional balance. Bright colors and complementary textures create pleasing images. And Karli is also able to incorporate printed material, like a restaurant’s menu, organically into her images. Her ability to combine great images of food with branded material makes her one of the best Austin food photographers.
She also has a treasure trove of clients who clearly adore her and her work. In the words of the CEO of Kerbey Lane Cafe: “It is a joy working with Karli. She’s both creative and efficient, and her work is top notch.”
Kimberly Davis earned her BFA in photography and has worked professionally since 2006. Between Kimberly’s talent as a photographer and her love of cooking, food photography is a natural fit for her. Many food photographers focus on making images that use neutral backgrounds to best show off the dishes, and Kimberly also has many images in this style. But, she also isn’t afraid to add some color to her work.
In fact, she boasts a fantastic gallery of images that use bright teals, pinks, yellows, and greens for the backdrop. These colorful images are immediately attention-grabbing and would be completely at home on a social media feed or in a magazine. As she simply states on her website: “I help take my client’s brands to the highest level and we have fun creating on set. Let’s work together!” What’s better than that?!
Jody Horton is an accomplished photographer with a long list of clients, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Garden & Gun, so you know he’s got the experience to do amazing work. He also operates a studio in Austin that even has a full kitchen for his food work.
His work often focuses on the rustic elements of dishes — meat or oysters over a fire, or raw ingredients presented on stained hardwood. In his body of work, we don’t only see the finished dish — we also explore how the dish is made. Rich colors and high-contrast lighting make all of the dishes pop. Tight shots focusing on arrays of vegetables or the Maillard reaction on a seared steak make sure no detail is missed when documenting a dish.
Jessica Attie developed her talent for photography over the years, going back to her first darkroom class when she was a teenager. Since then, she’s built an impressive body of work and a comprehensive client list, including Crown Royal, Bon Appétit, and Food & Wine. She expertly lights her images, often with bright backgrounds that emphasize the vibrant colors of a dish.
Furthermore, her top-down shots are composed with meticulous attention to detail, and her food layouts are well-balanced. In addition to these images, Jessica also captures motion in her images — hands reaching across a table to take a plate or the cover of a serving platter being lifted. These dynamic moments keep her images engaging.
SCAD graduate Dennis Burnett only recently moved to Austin and yet is at the top of his game photographically. Taking strong cues from documentary photography, Dennis’s work doesn’t simply display a dish. Instead, it tells a story about how the food is prepared and the people preparing it.
His images are also perfectly lit, often featuring large spreads of multiple dishes. Juxtaposed with these wider shots, Dennis does plenty of close-distance work that focuses on the textures of food — the smoothness of a crab shell or the roughness of handmade pasta. Images of the cooking process and the chefs behind it complete the story. We also love how Dennis describes his work: “I am able to fulfill the needs of editorial, commercial and corporate clients with an eye for detail, a sense of humor and a style rooted in documentary photography.”
Eric Coleman understands the marketing importance of good food photography. High-quality images capture people’s attention and tell the story of a business, and Eric’s food photography helps get people inside restaurants. His food displays focus completely on the dish in the frame, with strong side lighting to highlight every texture of the plated food. By focusing less on details of the setting and entirely on the food in the frame, Eric’s images create a strong sense of brand. Details are important in this kind of imagery, and Eric captures it all.
If you’re a restaurant and need images that will promote your company image, as well as make people hungry, then Eric is one of the best Austin food photographers that you could work with. Just check out how he describes his lifelong love of art and tell us you don’t want to work with this man!
“When I was a youngster I found a cartoon my older brother drew and it completely amazed me! It amazed me because at the time he’d drawn it, he was actually younger than me. I immediately thought to myself, if I want to be that good I better hurry up and start practicing! So at the ripe age of seven, I put away my childish aspirations of being an astronaut cop, and I set out to be an artist.”
10. Heather Barnes
Sensual food photography is a genre that Heather Barnes has pioneered. Unique to Heather, her ethos is as a playful visual storyteller. Whether it’s drizzles, drips, bright colors, or mouthwatering imagery, she produces fresh looks for global brands as well as emerging start-ups. Clients such as Ghirardelli and Austin favorites, NadaMoo and Tiff Treats, are attracted to Heather’s youthful, eye-popping macro photography, creating food that looks sensual.
Austin food photographers: conclusion
The best Austin food photographers have an eye for fine details. It’s an especially tricky business when you consider that their mission is to convey one sense-based experience through another — that is, to make you see how the food tastes.
The colors of the fresh ingredients, the process by which chefs prepare it, or the texture of each item, for example. By focusing on all these pieces of the whole, we’re able to take one look and think “Oh man, that looks delicious.” As if we didn’t already know that Austin’s a great food town, right?
Check out all the amazing venues in Austin available through Peerspace that can help your creative vision blossom!