So, here we have two photos. The image on the left was “styled” … I cooked everything separately, placed each element by hand and even added an upside-down bowl and some clear rocks in the bottom of the bowl to bulk up the noodles. It’s all edible and cooked thoroughly, but I was very careful and deliberate with how it looked. I prepared this bowl of food specifically to be photographed.

The second dish, the image on the right, was cooked immediately afterwards to eat for dinner with the leftovers from the photo on the left (not from anything in the other photo, just from the stuff I didn’t cook yet). I didn’t do anything special to it, I just cooked it up like I would any other time I cook a meal. When I was finished I dumped it into a bowl (with very little regard to where the food fell) and photographed for a few minutes while it was cooling down.

Also, both images were photographed in the same light and were edited pretty much exactly the same. The color differences on the image to the right is due to the way the image was cooked (the broccoli lost a lot of its green when cooked in the sauce with everything else), the way it is sitting in the bowl (light can’t hit it the same since it’s sunken in) and also from some “diffusion” from the the steam.

So, my question to you is: Which do you like better … and why? Leave a comment below if you’d like to chime in.