Thursday, September 7, 2017

9 Food Photography Secrets Revealed

Foodpanda interviews one of its top-photographers to guarantee glamorous food snaps 

Nowadays, everyone loves taking pictures of their food, whether it’s fiddling with filters to enhance images, or using special lenses for professional results - before actually digging in and enjoying a meal. But according to foodpanda, there are several even simpler tips to ensure masterful food photos without having to buy professional gadgets! 

1. What is considered to be most important when taking food photos?

It’s pretty difficult to pinpoint ‘the most important’ aspect to consider when taking photos of food, because a good photo depends on many factors, from lighting and technique to have an aesthetic eye, and of course the food itself. However, one of the most important things to consider is authenticity and to stay true to your individual style. Once you have your own style, you should stick to it, as it will serve as an expression of your personality.

2. Do you need a professional camera to achieve the above or can you take cool pictures with a smartphone? 

You can certainly achieve all of this with your smartphone! Having a professional camera has great benefits, but you are definitely not limited with a smartphone. If you know what factors to consider when taking pictures, you are guaranteed professional-looking images. You can also always edit pictures with the help of white balance settings or playing with one of the countless photography apps. 

3. Do ingredients play a role in pictures? 

That’s a pretty good question, because it doesn’t cross most people’s minds, but the contents of the dish do play a role in photos. There are many dishes that don’t photograph well, so you need to consider adding fresh ingredients that would enhance the picture. The next time you order food that is not photogenic, consider using fresh ingredients with great colors available in your kitchen. Feel free to arrange them nicely and test the angle.

4. Should you use raw ingredients around the dish in photos. What is the benefit? 

Raw ingredients make for great extra props, especially with foods that don’t photograph well. As mentioned, the addition of raw ingredients make the photo look fresh, while bright colors would make your photos pop. 

5. If a dish looks crowded, will the picture be less appealing? 

Yes, simplicity is key. The plate should be nicely arranged and not in an overwhelming way. To help you envision what that means, think about how you can keep the outer white space of the plate clear. I would suggest to just use a small portion of your meal to take the photo, and then later on enjoy it in its entirety! 

6. What about including hands in the photo? Is that a no-go? 

Adding a human element to your pictures actually makes for a good picture, as it shows viewers that you are taking the picture from your own point of view and creates a sense of presence. You could take a picture holding cutlery, or you could simply lay your hand on the side. Holding ingredients on hand (rosemary, cranberry etc.) is a great idea. Just test the angles and you’re sure to take a perfect shot! 

7. What are the best angles to use when taking food pictures?

Angles are the visual language connecting you and your audience, and my two favourites are the top angle and the front angle. Of course, there a lot of different angles that work, but these are my personal favorite when taking food pictures. 

8. And is there any necessity for professional gadgets? 

If you’re not a professional photographer, it’s not necessary to invest in technical additions. Improvisation couldn’t be easier! Here are some super helpful tips: 

● Decorate - use a wooden board to place your food, white baking paper or paper bag as a background even spread some baking powder around for that extra effect! 
● Use a napkin to take out excess oil from some dishes - oily dishes don’t photograph well and it will taste just the same. 
● Put your food close to a window. Natural lighting is key to the having best pictures. 
● Don’t have a selfie stick to take pictures from a high angle? Stand on a chair! 
● Use styrofoam as a substitute for reflectors, they work wonders!
● Set the focus point correctly on the main dish - simply click on the screen of your mobile phone. 

9. Any obvious tips? Golden rules?  

It might seem obvious, but it needs to be said that you should always keep the plate clean, especially when shooting close-ups. If there are smudges or imperfections, it would make the food look unappealing. Another tip would be to set up your perfect shot before your meal arrives -- food comes last in the composition process. Lastly, an arrangement is a golden rule, as it is the key to a successful picture. 

Food photography ultimately amounts to your interaction with your meal. Specific arrangements, differing camera angles, the use of natural lighting, and the human element are just some of the things to consider. This process takes time and postpones the moment of eventually taking that very first bite of a delicious meal. But the anticipation makes this experience all the greater, so take out your camera and enjoy snapping some cool shots using the above tips. Just don’t let that meal get too cold! 

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

HappyPlus Advisory Phishing Scam

Yesterday, I received an email regarding the HappyPlus Phishing Scam. I was shocked because pati HappyPlus card may phishing scam na rin pala. I will share here the email just in case you are not subscribed to their newsletter. 

This is to inform you of the SMS and email scams meant to target Happyplüs cardholders. These emails are sent to trick individuals into allegedly winning the Raffle Draw and downloading a certain application to claim the prize

Recently, some of the cardholders received an email or SMS that seemed to come from the Happyplüs program. Fraudsters make it appear as if the SMS or email come from the Happyplüs program. Clicking on the link, users are directed to download an application wherein they can claim the prize that they supposedly won in the Monthly Raffle draw. This application can be used as a virus to attack your devices. Please be informed that this is a phishing scam. Happyplüs will never ask its cardholders to download any application through embedded links

While the Happyplüs Technical Team has already taken action regarding this activity, we would like you to exercise caution regarding this suspicious email. We advise you and your family to change all your Happyplüs passwords. 

As an additional reminder, please take note of the following tips below to protect you from this fraudulent activity: 

Official Happyplüs Raffle Prizes can only be claimed at any of the participating Jollibee, Red Ribbon, Chowking and Greenwich stores.

We do not have any mobile or desktop application for Happyplüs. 

The approved DTI Number for the Happyplüs Raffle is 6206, Series of 2017. 

The raffle draw is held every 6th day of the next month. The winners are announced by the 3rd week of the month in the Happyplüs website and social media pages. 

Monthly Raffle Draw winners are listed in the Happyplüs website. You may check if you are one of the lucky winners.

If you receive a suspicious email, immediately report it to us. Kindly call our hotline (02) 588-6000 and send a copy / screenshot of the email or SMS you received to

Friday, July 28, 2017

2018 Philippines Holidays

July is almost over and Malacañang has already released the list of holidays for 2018. Check the list of Philippines Holidays in 2018 so you can plan your trip next year. We have 8 long weekends next year.

January 1, 2018, Monday – New Year's Day 

February 16, 2018, Friday – Chinese New Year  
February 25, 2018, Sunday – EDSA Revolution Anniversary 

March 29, 2018 – Maundy Thursday  
March 30, 2018 – Good Friday 
March 31, 2018 – Black Saturday 

April 9, 2018, Monday – Araw ng Kagitingan 

May 1, 2018, Tuesday – Labor Day  

June 12, 2018, Tuesday – Independence Day 

August 21, 2018, Tuesday – Ninoy Aquino Day  
August 27, 2018, last Monday of August – National Heroes' Day  

November 1, 2018, Thursday – All Saints' Day  
November 2, 2018, Friday  - All Soul's Day
November 30, 2018, Friday – Bonifacio Day 

December 24, 2018, Monday - Christmas Eve
December 25, 2018, Tuesday – Christmas Day  
December 30, 2018, Sunday – Rizal Day 
December 31, 2018, Monday – New Year's Eve