Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Fast Food Truth vs. Fiction

The top photo's Arby's beef and cheddar as advertised, while the next one is as purchased.

The top one has been "styled" - there's a whole industry out there called food styling.

It involves making food look good for professional photography.

It's what makes fast food look good.

Enter Jeff Kay from some zine called the West Virginia Surf Report. He performed a simple experiment.

He compared the foods he bought at fast food outlets with those same foods' styled advertisements,

"Each item was purchased, taken home, and photographed immediately. Nothing was tampered with, run over by a car, or anything of the sort. It is an accurate representation in every case. Shiny, neon-orange, liquefied pump-cheese, and all."
If you want to see his pics (they're great), click here

[Hat tip: Steffan]

Bookmark and Share


  1. Anonymous3:37 am

    So what's your point?

    This is no different than people attempting to make anything looks it's best when photographing it. When you sold your house did you leave the junk on the lawn and photograph it with a crappy camera for the advertisement? Did you use a random snapshot in your high school yearbook?

    For that matter, are photographs of fresh vegetables and fish done any differently?

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. I'm a recent subscriber, and I love your blog!

    Thanks for posting these links - you're right, those comparison photos are fantastic.

    On my occasional fast-food indulgences, I know not to expect my food to look like a groomed, stylized photo. But I don't think it's asking too much that my meal should at least look appetizing - and the food in these photos, props or style aside, looks anything but.

    I only wish I'd thought to take a photo of the last Arby's sandwich I ordered, several years ago, that included the unexpected delight of mould on the bun - but hat one went straight into the garbage bin :)