Rule of Thirds: A Guide to Composition for Food Photography

Buy Now for $29 USD

Take Your Composition to the Next Level

Do you struggle with your food photography composition? Maybe you understand the Golden Ratio intellectually, but you’re still unsure of exactly where to place your food and props on set. Where should you put your main food subject? What props should you use? Which way should the cutlery be facing?  

Rule-of-Thirds: A Guide to Composition for Food Photography will empower your creative process with bespoke compositional designs that will take the mystery out of composing your food stories. Whether you're a beginner just starting to learn about composition, or a more advanced shooter who feels stuck-in-a-rut, the 42 designs featured in this book will instantly transform your food photography.

The Principles

The principles of photographic composition broken down for food photography, with lots of examples. Learn about the cropping tricks and small tweaks that can have a big impact on your images. 

Case Studies

 I take you behind-the-scenes of my process and show you how I approached composing, lighting, and propping some of my most popular and best selling photographs. 

Compositional Diagrams

42 vectors to help you compose your food photography. Use these designs as a guide to help you with your set-ups and figure out where to place your food and props for maximum effect. 

Rule of Thirds Cover

What Will I Learn In This eBook? 

  • why you need to define your style before choosing your props and backgrounds
  • why your cutlery should never point toward your viewer 
  • how using the simplest technique will improve your photography right now (hint: it includes the number 3) 
  • why the wrong color background can break your photograph 
  • what are the best color combinations to use in your food photography
  • what is the focal point and why it's so important in composition
  • what is the Phi grid and why it's actually better than the rule-of-thirds
  • why your post-processing program of choice can be a powerful tool in helping you get better compositions
  • how to using pattern effectively in your food photography

... and much, much more!


What's Included in Rule-of-Thirds?

With this three-part eBook, you'll have all the the tools at your fingertips to immediately improve your food photography composition. 

Part I - The rule-of-thirds is only one compositional principle but there are others. This section goes over the principles of composition in detail. Artists have been using these principles for centuries. Now you'll find out how to apply them to your food photography. Learn about the various patterns and symmetries that can emerge within the frame, and how to crop your images for optimal impact.

Part II - Case studies from my own work will give you a behind-the-scenes look at my creative process and how I execute composing my professional work. I walk you through my thought process when approaching composition, how I choose my lighting, and how I select props and backgrounds. 

Part III - A big part of composition for food photography is knowing where to place everything within the frame. This section of 42 compositional diagrams will take the guesswork out of composing your scenes and allow your creativity to soar. 

The eBook also includes my BONUS Guide to Propping. The props and backgrounds you choose are a huge part of your composition and will have a powerful impact on your food photography. Learn how to curate a prop collection, where to source backgrounds, and what backgrounds and props work best in service of your creative vision. 

Composition Templates

Prompt Your Creativity

Keep producing the same old-same-old? Get a fresh perspective on composing your food scenes and find out how a commercial food photographer thinks about composition. 


Learn how to create powerful images by choosing the right props and backgrounds to tell your food story. Details like the right background can make or break an image. Find out how to approach propping the right way.


Understand why your image isn't working and how to fix it. Subtle tweaks can make a big difference. Learn how to frame that perfect shot and which editing tools can give your food photos that wow factor. 

Pre-visualize your set-ups

Knowing how want your end result to look beforehand can really empower your food photography. Choose from 42 compositional designs to inspire you and hone your creative vision. 

I want this!


Darina has created a book that brilliantly balances a ton of theoretical value with helpful, tangible, actionable exercises. This book is a steal for the price and it won’t just leave you confused like so many online tutorials, but rather, it will nurture you into feeling confident and definitely more skilled.

Kristy - Author of Cooking with Cocktails and CEO of Peppercorn Creative

Rule of Thirds Case Study

How will this guide benefit me? 

If you ever feel stuck in your food photography, chances are that you're recycling a lot of the same old compositions, or are even unsure of where to lay down your food and props. Maybe you use the rule-of-thirds all the time, but can't seem to get into the flow with other compositional principles.  

After reading this guide you'll have all the tools at your fingertips to take your food photography to the next level. You'll have a better understanding of how to implement the rules of composition with simple guidance and real-life examples. The unique feature of composition templates make this eBook different than any other composition resource out there. They are the perfect tool to immediately improve your food photography with a fresh perspective.

Template Sales Page

Why composition diagrams? 

Mapping out your shoots and pre-visualizing how you want your end result to look speeds up your workflow and helps you create better images. 

The 42 vectors in this guide are based on my own client storyboards and sketchbook. Use them for your own compositions and creative inspiration. A little shift in perspective can be all you need to create something fresh and new. Each diagram can be used over and over to create a wide variety of food scenes with a simple change-out of props and recipes. 

Rule of Thirds Propping

What BONUSES are included? 

The bonus Guide to Propping gives you my recommendations on how to source and create a variety of backgrounds for your food photography, as well as tips on the best way to choose the right props and backgrounds for your visual story.

In addition, when you purchase this book you'll receive a link to join a private composition-focused Facebook group, where you can get personal guidance and feedback from me, and interact with other like-minded people who love food photography just as much as you do. 


Rule of Thirds Sample Pages
  • 110-page interactive PDF with composition overlays
  • 7 case studies from a pro food photographer's portfolio
  • BONUS Guide to Propping
  • 42 compositional designs to prompt creativity and learning
  •  suggestions on how to work with each template
  • BONUS exclusive Facebook group


Shibani Mishra food photographer

Rule-of Thirds is a comprehensive guide to composing food photography scenes while keeping in mind the compositional principles. These principles are very well explained with loads of examples, case studies and images. What I love best about this eBook is that it has 42 composition templates that are a great guide to prompt your creative vision. This is unique and a bonus for food photographers who often struggle with composition. 

Shibani - food stylist, photographer, and blogger at Pearls of East  


Margaret Cook Eat Share

The 42 individual composition templates are exactly what I needed to teach me how to apply the rule-of-thirds, the focal point, angle and orientation, negative space and so much more.  I highly recommend this Guide to Composition to all who wish to learn or improve their skills in food photography as you are a wonderful teacher, highly skilled and an excellent communicator which is evident in the clear way you have written this guide.

Margaret - blogger at Create.Cook.Share  

Your all-in-one guide to better foood photography composition.

Buy the ebook $29 USD

About the Author

Darina Kopcok Photographer

I'm Darina, a pro food photographer, writer, and photography educator working with clients all over the world. Whether I'm shooting a cookbook or an advertising campaign, or mentoring new food photographers, I'm passionate about everything food and photography.