Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Question that always asked...............

I have always been asked similar questions every time when I told someone that I teach Food Styling at my university. ‘What is that all about?’ “What is Food Styling?’, ‘What really Food Styling do?’ and ‘Who is this Food Stylist?’. I guess this is due to the fact that Food Styling is totally an ‘alien’ subject for most Malaysian. They might not aware that how much they are been exposed to this food styling element almost everyday in their life. The TV that they watched, the poster and billboard that they stumbled on their way to work, or even food pictures and advertisement that they always encountered when reading newspaper or magazines, all of that are full with Food Styling element. Not to mentioned the menu card that they referred to order their meal. And all that are full lots of Food Styling elements.

As mentioned earlier in my posting Food Styling is an art of preparing and presenting food for the camera. It the works to make food look good and appetizing that will stimulates ones urging for it. So the work of food stylist is to create food and dishes that appear in magazines, cookbooks, advertisements, food packaging, television commercials, and sometimes even feature films. Using behind the scenes magic and culinary artistry, a food stylist is responsible for making food look exciting, enticing, and effortlessly prepared – in essence, seducing the viewer. The food stylist brings to a photograph a creative eye, expertise in food preparation, and artistic interpretation of the black-and-white words of recipe (Lou Manna, 2005).
What is need for a good food stylist? To be a good food stylist ones need to be ready to the challenges and endurances the trade demanded. Here are some attributes that are needed to be a good food stylist (Custer, 2010).
• Well organized
• A good cook and good baker
• A problem
• A good team player
• Someone who knows when to lead and when to take direction
• Confident
• Able to deal with stress
• Patience and tolerant
• Personable
• Professional
• Creative and artistic
• Physically healthy
• Able to see the humor
• Versatile
• Off course you must not be color blind! (me)

Food Stylist normally work free lance, they may be working based on assignment and task given to them. Food related company and even those company that might not have anything to do with food sometimes anggaged their service. Most of their work can be found in printed media such as magazines, nespaper, catalog, brochure and cookbook. Apart from that they also provides services for advertising, packaging and labelling. Below where you may find Food Stylist works:

•Editorial - Cookbooks, magazines
•Public relations – Newspaper, magazine, promotional material, recipe development
•Marketing – catalogs for food/equipments, Mini cookbooks, contests, point of purchase displays.
•Advertising – Ads, Commercials, Posters, Billboards, banners.
•Packaging – Food, equipment.
•TV and Film – Commercials, TV shows, movies, Training videos, Food shows, Cooking shows.


  1. Hi,

    I just knew your website, and I was so exicited to read your posts. I'm a reporter for a cookery magazine in Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam. So, I love to learn about styling food so much. Hope to read more great entries from you.

    Best regards,

    Thuy Quynh

  2. Chef all my admiration and respect for you. Thanks for sharing your knowledge. Greetings from Venezuela, Latin America. God bless you and your family.

    Roberto Silvestre

  3. Salam.....Terima kasih En.Ali, blog yg sungguh informatif utk sy lbh memahami ttng food styling..

    -ct fairuz
    epjj student

  4. Salam En Ali,
    I'm a home maker.I cook for sanity (i.e when I'm bored and about to go insane). Recently I've posted my dishes in fb and found it to be stress relieving. Have always been interested in food styling and I stumbled upon yr blog. What an inspiration you are!! Love what you do..My Q is do one have to be a good cook to be a food stylist? Keep up the good work, will visit you time and time again.

  5. The answer to your question is in this blog.......keep reading my dear.......or let me concludes that as Food Stylist knowledge n skill on cooking will be an added advantages.