Food Photography: Styling a Sandwich

|||Food Photography: Styling a Sandwich

Food Photography: Styling a Sandwich

By |2018-07-10T12:44:05+00:00June 11th, 2010|Categories: Tips & Tricks|Tags: |16 Comments

The last few days I’ve posted photos from a food shoot I did, and I thought I’d share some tips on how I styled it.

When you make yourself a sandwich at home they don’t usually look all poofy and airy, they usually end up flattened with all the ingredients mushed together. Well, I wanted my sandwich to look like all of the ingredients were stacked up beautifully, and wanted those nice little curls to the deli meat, so I did more than just place all the pieces on top of each other.

In order to keep the sandwich from being flat and saggy I cut small pieces of cardboard and layered them as-needed in-between the elements. I put one under and on-top of the lettuce, and then I used tooth-pick halves to pin the bunched-up deli meat in place. The toothpicks also helped to add bulk and hold up the tomatoes, which were placed (along with the top piece of bread) directly on the deli meat.

About the Author:

Nicole S. Young is a professional photographer and published author whose love of photography and teaching has grown into an online business where she creates training materials and resources for other photographers. Nicole is best known for her books on food photography, but is widely versed in a variety of photographic genres, including landscape, travel, lifestyle, and even underwater photography. You can learn more about Nicole's work on her website,


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Nicole S. Young, Ashley Miller. Ashley Miller said: Cool tips! RT @nicolesy: New post at – "Food Photography: Styling a Sandwich" […]

  2. Acerebel June 11, 2010 at 7:52 am - Reply

    I love your tips, don’t get me wrong, but now I know why we’re all so let down when we order takeaway food. It never looks like the piccie and now we all know why! LOL

  3. T Garrett June 11, 2010 at 9:12 am - Reply

    I hope that beautiful sandwich doesn’t get thrown away when you’re done with it. That would make me cry (I love sandwiches)!

  4. Dawn June 11, 2010 at 1:03 pm - Reply

    Aaah so THAT’S how it’s done!

  5. scott neumyer June 11, 2010 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    The question is… do you take out the cardboard and toothpicks and EAT the sandwich after? :)

  6. Damaris June 12, 2010 at 9:56 am - Reply

    thanks for the tips. I’m always looking for food photography ideas.

  7. Jessica June 12, 2010 at 9:53 pm - Reply

    Wow! Thanks for the insider’s tip. I always wondered how it was done…

  8. Charles June 13, 2010 at 2:50 pm - Reply

    Nicole – thank you so much for generously sharing your tips. Your photos are wonderful.

  9. bee June 13, 2010 at 3:23 pm - Reply

    Cool tipp – thank you! I’m always grateful for food photography tipps.

  10. Glen June 13, 2010 at 3:32 pm - Reply

    Great tips. How about your lighting techniques?

  11. Nicole June 13, 2010 at 6:39 pm - Reply

    Glen – here’s a link to a food setup I did lit the same way (North-facing window light with a reflector) along with an illustration of the setup:

  12. Glen June 14, 2010 at 3:14 pm - Reply

    Nicole, Thank You so much.

  13. Lorraine June 15, 2010 at 3:27 am - Reply

    I know everyone would eat that (with the cardboard!) had you not divulged this dirty little secret ;)

  14. Eli Reinholdtsen June 15, 2010 at 2:59 pm - Reply

    How clever is that! Wow! Thank you for sharing.

  15. Karen July 20, 2010 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    I love this info! THanks

  16. Yue Edwards September 30, 2010 at 7:19 pm - Reply

    Good post!! thank you for sharing! i’d love to see more food styling tips from you!

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