The Gateway to the West is known for many things, but did you also know that comfort food and fine dining are also part of that list? And where there’s fine dining, there are passionate creatives striving to help create visuals with impact, helping local and national brands and restaurants stand out from the rest. Why not partner up with one of the following top Omaha food photographers? Check out the work of these talented shutterbugs!
Dana Damewood holds a BFA in photography from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Her combination of innate creative expression meshes amazingly well with her formal training. As a result, numerous brands have recognized her work, including Country Living Magazine, the Food Network, and Cosmopolitan Magazine. Dana’s food images are contemporary in character, using both a white, natural light and deep shadow-style as needed for a given collaboration.
One particular strength of her portfolio is the food lifestyle angle she often presents. While we are treated to artfully arranged, beautiful dishes, Dana also showcases the moments of connection and the venues that add to the overall dining atmosphere and experience. Lifestyle images carry a story and mood that adds to the sensory elements of fine dining, making it easier to imagine ourselves sitting at the table ready to eat!
2. Philip of Nealey Photo
An ever-versatile photographer — shooting portraits, editorials, and adverts — Philip Nealey covers several genres using a refreshing approach, earning his place as one of the top food photographers in Omaha. With over 15 years of experience in the digital art world, he’s adept at using both camera and computer to create composites, illustrations, and representations that highlight the message and brands behind some of the world’s largest household names. Taco Bell, Burger King, McDonald’s, and Little Caesars are just a few of Philip’s satisfied clients.
Philip uses simple, uncluttered compositions with much of his food and beverage work, a controlled style that emphasizes his experience as a stock photographer for Getty Images and Corbis. In addition, if you’re aiming to tell the story of where food comes from, Philip’s agricultural images show the sometimes forgotten world of wheat and corn in the US heartland, as well as the hardworking people who dedicate their lives to feeding the world.
3. Machaela of Morrissey Photography
Just a stone’s throw from Omaha in Council Bluffs, IA, Machaela is the creative mastermind behind Morrissey Photo. She spells out the hidden power of food photography best in her own words, “People eat with their eyes. Meaning, their enjoyment of food and drinks is about more than how it tastes. It’s about how it looks.” This simple truth is often the reason why so many restaurants fail, and a select few get propelled to rare heights. People are sampling your dishes before they ever set foot in the door: online, through your menu, and via word of mouth.
Thus, it’s important to hire an intuitive photographer who understands this and brings experience working in the restaurant industry — this type of creative will create impactful images that will lead clients in by the nose and taste buds! That said, the warm, close-up, often macro character of Machaela’s images play to memories of smell, taste, and texture in incredible ways. Her attention to detail is such that dishes are even arranged so that the most savory elements are presented up front. We especially enjoy the play of complementary shapes, lines, and colors in her overhead table spreads.
4. Kevin Kabore
When not working as an Omaha food photographer, Kevin Kabore also produces portraits, travel photography, and videography for metro residents and businesses. His love of variety does not detract from his skill set in the least, and we find his high-contrast style perfectly suited to a wide variety of dishes. Kevin’s love of deep shadow often adds a homey style to on-location shoots like coffee shops and cafes.
While much of his portraiture is monochromatic, color is downplayed in his food photography. This is an unusual choice that gives Kevin’s images a signature flair all his own, especially combined with his thoughtful use of shadows and shallow depth of field. With his on-location work, we’re given glimpses of the venue in the background that adds to the sense of the dining experience.
Omaha locals are behind the commercial photography studio Admiral District, its name a nod to local history. These creators’ neighborhood, the Blackstone District, was once home to The Admiral movie theater, a local cornerstone of community life. While the neighborhood withered over the decades, it has since seen a modern revival thanks to creatives and entrepreneurs breathing life into it by moving in with vibrant ideas and businesses.
The Admiral District includes an upper-level event venue, while the lower level features 6500-sq.ft. of work spaces, offices, and studios. Small wonder they cook up astounding food photography! Working both on location and in studio, they create beverage and food images ranging from stock photography-style shots to culinary lifestyle images with full table spreads and drinks poured for added story. They use a well-balanced style in terms of color, shadows, and highlights with flexible compositions suited to any creative collaboration whatsoever.
6. Amanda Hobbs of From Me to Vuu
Amanda Hobbs is an Omaha food photographer and blogger striving to share her knowledge and love of dishes that bring people together. Her culinary images and recipes focus on simple dishes that maximize enjoyment and minimize effort and fuss, making them accessible and fun to attempt. Despite the simplicity of her dishes, Amanda’s recipes and food images cover the entire culinary spectrum.
Whether you’re in the mood for a kale Waldorf salad or something heavier like rosemary chicken and potatoes, her pictures are artful accompaniments that allow each dish to come together for family and friends. The punchy, bright character of her style imbues her work a contemporary flavor perfectly suited to a food blog. And Amanda’s artful, minimalist compositions are a refreshing departure from the often cluttered compositions typical in this genre.
7. Julie Menghini of Hostess at Heart
“On occasion, I will make recipes that are just delicious and have nothing to do with watching my waistline. I will apologize right now for going off the deep end once in a while,” says Julie Menghini. This sentiment is definitely relatable and part of the immense appeal of Julie’s photography!
Eyeing a blueberry cobbler or a meatball sub at nose level may be considered by some as poor table manners, but Julie knows just how much we all secretly want to do just this! And we’re treated to all of the sensory and emotional elements such a view inspires. Comfort food and deftly crafted images to match are the secret sauce behind Julie’s success. Hostess at Heart is her way of sharing her love of cooking with a larger audience, and we’re thankful she’s here to illustrate each of her recipes in an expert fashion.