Food Photography: Taming Reflections in Soup

By | 2016-12-18T17:00:59+00:00 July 12th, 2013|3 Comments

Top photo: My standard food setup caused a reflection on the top of my soup. 
Bottom Photos: A piece of foam board placed behind the setup removed the unwanted reflections.

One of the simplest tools I use with my food photography is white foam board. You can get this stuff at craft stores and most stores that have a “crafts” section in their store for $1-2, depending on the size. I use 20″x30″ pieces, mostly for fill light, but on occasion I need to cut out reflections and cut down the amount of lights in my backgrounds with it as well, so to do that I just place one directly behind the setup.

Now, doing this will reduce the amount of light you have in your scene, which is why I almost always use a tripod for my food images. There is still light coming in from above which gives me the quality of light I like to create with my food photography.

BTW, that giant diffuser in the background is a 4-ft by 6-ft Lastolite Panelight Collapsible Diffuser, my new FAVORITE tool for diffusing light with my food photography.

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. Liz@HoosierHomemade July 13, 2013 at 8:42 am - Reply

    So excited to have found you! Thanks for your help!

  2. Barry john July 13, 2013 at 12:58 pm - Reply

    Great tip thanks
    I love my lastolite hi lite too

  3. Pal July 15, 2013 at 12:30 am - Reply

    Nice pictures. Have you ever tried Circular Polarizing filters? Not only can they sometimes reduce reflections, they can add saturation to your hero.

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