Creating mouth-watering, enticing food illustrations that depict the pleasures of fresh food is the primary task of the food illustrator.
Food illustration came into the spotlight in the 40s and 50s when food photography was commissioned at premium prices. Many food producers, stylists, and chefs sought an alternative in hand-drawn illustrations that presented an idealized view of familiar foods.
Many food illustrators use photographs of food as reference when they draw. However, working from life–by arranging food on a drawing table or in a still life– gives the illustrator an opportunity to draw a subject from different angles to find the vantage point best suited to the message an illustration is intended to communicate.
Food illustrators often cook themselves or feel at home in the kitchen. They stay current on trends to create images that are fresh and in touch with the latest goods in the marketplace.
When used in a cookbook, a food illustration gives the reader a preview of the finished recipe.
Food illustrators spend a lot of time thinking about what makes food appealing. Through an agile use of color, line, shape, texture, and reflection, they recreate the look and feel of an apple, quince, or pear so irresistibly, it’s hard not to take a bite.
Adept at capturing a sense of pleasure and the natural beauty of ingredients, the food illustrator brings drawings of food to life.