Your Instagram feed is probably littered with blurry, dark food photos that make even the tastiest dish look questionable. It's time to up your food-porn game. Photographer Daniel Krieger shot our entire Food & Drink Awards 2014 feature on an iPhone with Instagram filters, so he knows a thing or two about making cell-phone snaps look good. (Seriously: All the portraits below were shot with Krieger's iPhone.) Read his five tenets of Insta photography to rack up the likes after your next meal out.
Look for good light
"Professional photographers use elaborate and expensive lighting setups to create beautiful images, but that's not really an option for most people using their phones. The best thing to use is natural light. Window light is the first choice, but you can move yourself around to find what's right—sometimes it takes a few minutes and a few tries to really get it perfect. There's something magical about the way the iPhone picks up direct light on food, creating beautiful colors and shadows."
Put some distance between you and your subject
"I find a lot of the worst food photos happen because people are way too close to their food. Cameras in phones don't do macro well, so back the fuck up! For most of my food or cocktail photos, I like to be a few feet away from my subject. Experiment with a range of two to four feet away and see how it looks. Obviously, if you're photographing a small cupcake you'll want to be closer—or just get a bigger cupcake."
Watch your peripherals
"Try keeping the table clean except for a few essential details: the dish, maybe a napkin, silverware and a drink."
Try a bird's-eye-view shot
"This is my go-to style of shooting. With my professional camera I have more flexibility with lenses to create different looks, but the camera in an iPhone looks great when shooting from above."
Experiment, and take a bunch of shots
"Try moving yourself around what you're shooting—the food is going to stay still, but you can move yourself. Find the right light by shooting from different angles and locations. Fire off a few frames; don't just take one photo. Try the edge of a table—I like incorporating angles and patterns in my images when possible. And finally, edit the image: Snapseed is a powerful and free editing tool, and I edit just about every photograph I post to Instagram.
Ayios Greek Rotisserie
Can’t afford a vacation in Santorini? Get a taste of the Greek lifestyle at this taverna in the East Village. Whet your appetite with a crispy slice of spinach spanakopita ($10), a plate of chargrilled octopus ($19) or shrimp saganaki ($18). For your main course, go casual with a chicken or pork yeeros platter served with fries, tomatoes, onions, pita and the house sauce ($14), or gorge on the rich moussaka, a dish of eggplant, potato and ground beef topped with a thick layer of bechamel sauce ($16). A whole grilled sea bass ($25) or salmon fillet ($18) might do the trick if you’re craving seafood. Finish your meal with a traditional Greek walnut cake ($8) or head straight for the bar. You’re going to want to taste the hard-to-find spirits like ouzo ($7) and the Greek brandy called metaxa ($14). The wine lists features mostly Mediterranean vintages, while the signature cocktail list includes themed beverages like a Mykonos Mule ($14).
Venue says: “When you mention Time Out you can have a Yeeros Pita with your choice of either a glass of house wine or draft beer for $9.”