Food Styling & Photography for Sugar Plum Bakes

11 May 2017

I’ve been a passionate photographer for many years now. In fact, I received my first ever camera on my 10th birthday. It was one of those point and click cameras, which would seem pretty antiquated today, but I absolutely loved it! My photography has evolved with me over the years, seeing me through my backpacker’s travels and then onto capturing moments in my children’s lives. It has always remained a constant pastime that I adore. 

And now, it is absolutely integral to the work I do.

Chocolate brownies and fresh raspberries

If you’ve been following me for a while, you may have noticed a change in my images. About a year ago I completed my first Food Photography course with Makelight ( Up until then, photographing my cakes and cookies for my business had been all about product photography. It was only while doing the Makelight course that I realised that I could do food photography in a completely different way. 

Chocolate buttercream swirls and cake decorating tools

Emily Quinton (co-founder of Makelight) and Catherine Frawley ( were teaching us about more than just how to take a good food photo, they were teaching us how to style a photo to make people want to step into the picture with you. How to make it inviting. How to draw the observer’s eye around the food scene and make them want to take a seat at the table. Admittedly, food photography is not easy at all. It has taken considerable time and practice for the advice and tips from the tutorials to really sink in. 

Victoria sponge layer cake

A year on, I’m still working on finding my own style. I want to be able to photograph food in such a way that when people see a picture of mine, they know it belongs to me. Much in the way that when I come up with cake designs, that people think: ‘Ah yes, that’s Sugar Plum Bakes!’ 

The food styling and photography will continue to be a work in progress. But actually I love that! The harder I work at it, the more confidence it brings me and the more joy. Although, it doesn’t always work out the way you want it to! You have to be prepared to walk away sometimes and try again later. Food photography and flatlays can be funny like that! But I don’t think I will ever stop loving how a food scene can be completely transformed. By looking through the lens and simply clicking a button, you can capture a whole other world. For me anyway, it is some kind of wonderful. Xx