Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Food Photography| Gluten Free Baking

Food Photography | Gluten Free Baking

By Toronto Food Photographer Robert Greatrix | Fulcrum Imaging

Much of my food portfolio up to this point is self assigned and when I make a dish generally we eat it for lunch or dinner. This does raise some difficulties as my wife, Marie is Gluten Free and we have both friends and close family that have been diagnosed with Celiacs Disease. I myself, am not sensitive to Gluten and I consider myself a foodie, so I find that dishes made Gluten Free do not have the same taste or texture for the most part. In the past I found one of the most difficult was finding good GF pastries or recipes to make them that were simple and had ingredients that were easy to source (which continues to get easier). So thanks to a little research, some experiments and some slight tweaks I finally have a recipe that I love. The original recipe I found here: and after a couple of tries I found I liked the pastry with 1/2 cup of oat flour substituted for part of the rice flour. You have to read the above linked recipe very carefully to get the ingredients correct as it is formatted to show two different recipes and it is confusing. I will list out what I use to avoid the confusion:

1/4 to 1/2 cup Oat Flour (preference)
3/4 to 1 cup Brown Rice Flour (preference but keep the total of the two top flours 1 1/4 cups)
1/2 Cup Sweet Rice Flour 
1/2 cup Tapioca Starch
2 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
I teaspoon Xanthan Gum
I cup (8ounces) butter (2 Sticks) 
7 Tablespoons Ice Water (may need to be adjusted up or down)


I freeze the butter first. Combine all the dry ingredients in a food processor. Then shred the frozen butter through a box grater or equivalent into the dry mixture, pulsing a few times after the first half (1 stick) is shredded and again after the second half. This gives a cornmeal like textured mix. I then add the ice water, one tablespoon at a time giving it a pulse after each one then a few more after to ensure it is evenly combined. I then transfer the dough to a freezer bag, squish it slightly into a ball and put in the fridge for an hour or so. I then work it with a rolling pin on a piece of parchment paper coated liberally with Rice Flour (or all purpose GF Flour mix). I also sprinkle the same on top to stop my rolling pin from sticking. The pastry is a little difficult to work with and you can also use a second pice of parchment on top to roll it and help place it in your baking vessel but when you get it right the results are fantastic. So far we have made Berry Tarts and Butter Tarts (my favourite), Apple Pie, Tourtiere and Quiche. See the photos below. I hope you enjoy. 

Food Photography is my business and if you like to see more of my portfolio please click HERE  to go to the Fulcrum Imaging Website. 

We are Toronto Food and Corporate Photographers and are booking shoots for food and corporate clients for February and March. Call or email us to save your time slot now or just to talk :-)

Phone: 647-408-6354

All images are copyrighted and the property of Robert Greatrix, and Fulcrum Imaging and cannot be used without permission. 

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Photography Self Assignment: Staying Ahead of the Competition

Photography Self Assignment: Staying Ahead of the Competition

As I ended out 2014 I was thinking about my business and also my artistic goals for the coming year. So I produced this image that allowed me to do a a few things.

The first was shoot for a story/theme: Staying ahead of the competition. So the way I shot this (yes these are self portraits) and composited it was was to show how a business needs to stay ahead of its competition even though they may look and act like your business. Regardless of how similar we are there always differences and finding what makes you unique and marketing what makes you unique is the key to separating yourself in a competitive business market.

Number two was to try some different lighting techniques. For the base shots I used a three point lighting technique with two strip boxes behind and to the sides of the subject to provide rim/side lighting and a high front light and a low reflector to provide a fill on the front. This is a lighting technique I want to experiment with more in 2015. The goal was to produce an edgy lighting set-up and further enhance that edgy contrasty look in both Lightroom and Photoshop.

And the third goal was to practice making selections and producing a simple composite of blended and scaled the images in Photoshop. I put each image on its own layer and scaled them according to position with the transform tool and added an increasing amount of blur to the images that appear further away to simulate a realistic depth of field.

Competition by Robert Greatrix
If you enjoy my photography please visit my website for more .

If you want to participate in producing some fun and unique images please contact me I am always looking for interesting self assignments in addition to paid work.

All my blog images are copyright and cannot be used without permission.