Cupcake Photography Tips

The Story:

With all this craziness of writing a cookbook, I thought this might be a good time to give a few tips of food photography.  After all, it’s not that difficult if you know the basics.


Natural Light: It is a must.  Find a good window at home or a place on your back porch and set up! But here’s the trick, you don’t want direct sunlight.  So if it’s a cloudy day, then celebrate! That cloud coverage is good for vampires and for your photography! But if there’s bright sun, then go outside under a tree, or find a room in your house that doesn’t have a harsh light coming through the window.  If you need to, you can hang a sheer white fabric over your window to help soften it.

Reflecting Board: Do you see the white thing to the right of my cupcakes? That is a reflecting board.  It bounces the light back onto the cupcakes to (from the window) to lessen the shadows on the cake.  You don’t need to run out and buy a “reflecting board.” A piece of white poster board will do just fine. Bend it in half so that it will stand up on it’s own and you are good to go!

Set the Scene: I like to use poster boards in the back of my set ups because I usually photograph in a small college apartment and I don’t have much space.  But no matter what, keep your background simple.  You don’t want it to distract from your beautiful treat.

The Camera: Budgets allow for different cameras.  Get what you can comfortably afford and with these tips you will still get great photos.  Even iphones these days have amazing capabilities.  Go to my About page to see what camera I use.

Make it Personal: Take a ton of photos and figure out what looks like YOU.  You need to give it your own flare and personal touch.  This can come through props, angles or even how you edit the photos.  And before you know it, you will have a beautiful photo.

Oreo Hostess Cupcakes, get the recipe here!

19 thoughts on “Cupcake Photography Tips

  1. 1
    Marisha says:

    You have NO idea how helpful this post was!! I started blogging recently and one of the things I struggle with the most is how to take good pictures. Everyone’s pictures always look SO amazing and I want to cry sometimes because I can’t get those kinds of pictures. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  2. 2

    Thanks for the tips! Lately I’ve had better luck with taking photos outside, but since I live in Oregon, that is not something I can do year round. I will give the reflector board a try. Hopefully my indoor pictures won’t have so many shadows.

    • 2.1

      Lacey, I am in Oregon right now taking photos for my cookbook, I take half my photos outside and half inside. Just find a good window in your home that has gentle light coming in so you don’t get bad shadows. Good luck!

  3. 3

    Great tips! I’ve bought some low-end photography equipment to make the most out of my small space as well 🙂 Thanks for the help!

  4. 4
    Sue says:

    Some great suggestions! I like the idea of using the white board to bounce the light back! Any tips for composition?

  5. 5
    Amy says:

    Thanks for these great tips on photography and the photos to match 🙂 I have been wondering how to do a simple reflecting board, and I had to go to the newsagent tomorrow anyway. Now I know exactly what I am looking for.

  6. 6
    Luli says:

    Thank you for the tips, I’ve been trying to take better pictures of my desserts and I’m hoping this will help!

  7. 7

    This post was very helpful, thank you so much for posting it!

  8. 8
    Lisa says:

    When will your cookbook be coming out and what is the name of it?

  9. 9
    Zeina says:

    Hi, ur cupcakes are AMAZING and I love your way of editing. If I may ask, can u tell me the name of the app or site that you use for editing your pictures? Plz

  10. 10
    Jessica R says:

    What a great post! Thank you for sharing these tips…I don’t know why I never thought of poster board (duh)…I see great pics on your blog and others and always wondered why there’s always a nice, clean background and now I know why (thanks again!). btw, your recipes all sounds so delish, I cannot wait to try making some of them soon. 🙂

  11. 11

    Love this how-to post! Thank you! Using the poster boards are such a great tip and are going to be able to be easily stored in an apartment.

  12. 12
    SoLe RoMo says:

    Hello!!! I really believe in destiny…I found you just on the right momment! I’m starting my own cupcake bussiness, after thinking about it for almost a decade I finally decided! (For the momment I’ll just sell on the web!) You’ve been so usefull I’m in debt with you! I really love every inch of you website! I did my first cupcakes right out of here (Almond Maraschino & Tiramisu) and my husband really love them (fortunately he has a BIG sweet tooth)and I’m about to take a sample to a coffee shop!
    You’re my godmother…So wish me luck! :))))

  13. 13
    jeremy says:

    so good thanksssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss saved my lifeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee you bae number 1 for real omggggg

  14. 14

    Thank you. Simple and good. I always take tons of pics ehehehhe now I am searching for a cute, easy and beautiful background board……:)

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