National Potato Day!

Happy National Potato Day! With last week being National Julienne Fries Day, there have been a lot of potato celebrations recently. Fries are probably my favorite form of potatoes, so I thought I would celebrate with my second favorite. Tator Tots. More importantly with Totchos.

What are Totchos you ask? Well they are nachos made with potatoes! If you have never had this combination before try it! It is as good if not better than regular nachos. So in order to celebrate, I decided it was only appropriate to create my Tailgating Tachos. I will share with you the recipe another time (although it is queso on top of Nachos, so it’s not terribly difficult to figure out). Instead, I want to talk with you how I photographed the picture.

I started out by thinking what mood and message I wanted to say with my picture. With the recipe being Tailgating Totchos, it only made sense to style the picture like I would do at a tailgate. Collegiate colors (purple and yellow) paper serving tray, purple table cloth, and plastic fork all say, “I am at a tailgate”. I wanted it too look like the totchos were sitting on the table waiting for someone to pick up, so I used stacks of cups and a crock pot (its what you make the queso in) as the background.

My lighting was pretty simple. Window on the right, fill on the left, Here is the set up.

You can’t see it in the picture, but I was shooting with a tripod and a remote. This allowed me to add the queso and quickly capture the image without shaking the camera.

Even with all this planning, you will make changes with your composition and styling. Once the queso gets put on, there isn’t much time before it starts to harden and look unappetizing so I made sure I had everything set up before adding it. Here are some shots showing the evolution of the picture.

You can see how the fork, cups, and tots were moved around to get what I want. Here is with the queso added.

Mmmmm delicious. Here are the camera settings ISO 250 f4 1/124 sec with a 100mm Macro lens. With the tray being so much wider than it is tall, I think I like the horizontal shot better.

Happy National Potato day and enjoy your favorite potato variety!


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  1. says

    hi, I would love to know the procedure of this recipe…this looks awesome and new to me…I would love to introduce this to my friends…I hope you post or send me email how to do it. thanks btw your photos are incredible, it stunning =)

  2. Cathy says

    Like the horizontal final shot as well, your photography is gorgeous and i am enjoying your thought process and styling tips to understand all that went into getting the perfect tachos picture that makes us want to devour them all! thanks

  3. says

    You are currently my very favorite blog, I love your explanation of how you set up a shoot and why you make the decisions that you do. Your final product always looks appetizing and unique, not the “same” as alot of what I see.

    Keep up the great work and PLEASE try and plan a workshop out west sometime!

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