10 Tricks Food Photographers Use to Make Stuff Look Edible—Even When It Isn’t (VIDEO)

Food always looks great in TV and magazine ads, right? That’s usually the case whether we’re talking about a cheap burger at a fast food joint or an expensive steak at a nice restaurant. Well, we hate to break it to you but some of that appetizing food you drool over in ads isn’t really edible at all.

As you’ll see in the video below, food photographers employ some mind-blowing tricks to make people really crave what they see in ads, like using mashed potatoes as a stand-in for ice cream which melts too quickly under hot studio lights. Of course potatoes are edible, but how about using Elmer’s Glue to mimic milk because the real thing tends to appear too thin and not white enough in photographs?

As for that gorgeous beef you see above, let’s just say those “grill marks” were painted on with shoe polish. So watch the video below, try not to be too disillusioned, and you’ll learn several more tricks you can use yourself the next time you want to photograph a meal. And be sure to check out our earlier story with some equally creative tricks you can employ to make unique portraits.