This series was inspired by an assignment in which we were asked to cut a burrito in half for a client. Normally for a job, we photograph the surface of food, occasionally taking a bite or a piece out, but rarely the cross section of a finished dish. The focus is to make it appetizing and beautiful, to make the viewer hungry, or to inspire them to recreate the dish. But little attention is paid to what the dish actually looks like inside, once opened. By cutting these items in half, we move past the simple appetite appeal we normally try to achieve, and explore the interior worlds of these products.
Food stylist Charlotte Omnès and I thought it would be interesting to explore foods items that are commonplace to our everyday life. We chose foods that we felt were iconic symbols within our Western food culture; classic items that many of us grew up eating.
Charlotte and I have a very low-tech approach to creating these images. Gelatin, glue, Crisco, scissors, and saws were utilized in fabricating each object. When we could not accomplish it all in one photograph, we created various images, which were then composited in Photoshop.
I chose to light them with a harder light and place them against black. I wanted the viewer to focus on the hard reality of each interior, the texture and surface quality. With this simplicity of both the lighting and background, each subject revealed its own qualities.
Beth Galton is one of New York’s top food and still life photographers. She graduated from Hiram College with a degree in studio art. Her attention to detail and strong sense of composition has allowed her to acquire a noteworthy client list including, Chipotle, Mott’s, Hellmann’s, Kraft Foods, Denny’s, MacDonald’s, and Post Cereal to name a few.
Beth’s photographs have been published in many cookbooks and her work is exhibited periodically. She has received numerous awards from the Art Director’s Club, One Show, Creativity Show, Communications Arts, Graphics, the International Festival of NY, Lürzer’s Int’l Archive’s ‘200 Best Advertising Photographers,’ and PDN Taste Awards.
Cut Food Series has received much recognition, and has been included in exhibitions such as Aperture’s Summer Open and The Dairy Arts Center’s A Taste of Art, in which Cut Food Series won first place. It has also been featured widely on the Internet, by websites such as Feature Shoot, People, Business Insider, NPR and most recently Time Out, to name a few.