This year, the Pantone colour of the year is Very Peri. The shade provided the inspiration for my Pantone food photography idea.
I created a series of food photographs inspired by this new Pantone colour. Purple is one of those colours that rarely appear in food and so it posed a challenge to create interesting food photos.
Pantone food photography series
The first thing that came to mind was a purple yam called ube (pronounced oo-beh). Ube is native to the Philippines and is unique in flavour, taste and colour. You could describe it to having a mild vanilla, coconut sort of taste. In the food photographs below I show two common ways to eat ube – in baked goods and as a jam.
Pantone describes this new colour as “rekindling gratitude…complemented by a new perspective that resonates today”. It was a good way to describe the reinvention of Filipino cuisine in the contemporary food scene and also fit well with my exploration of colour.
Another thing that Pantone’s Colour of the Year embodies is the fusion of the digital and physical world in modern life. This inspired this food photograph of a towering stack of chocolate bars with lush melted chocolate.
Finally, I extended the chocolate theme by creating this close up of a chocolate malteser milkshake. The combination of brown and purple are uncommon in food photography, but I found it particularly emphasises the rich tones in the chocolate and gives it that extra pop.
Professional food and drink photographer
As a professional food photographer, the understanding of colour theory is paramount. Knowing which foods look best with what colour and knowing how to choose your props and backdrops accordingly is an invaluable skill.