The lighting is crucial—the photographers set up their boards and tripod, praying for the sunlight to linger a little longer, as they frame the prefect shot. But when the model starts wrinkling before their very eyes, they know that their avocado won’t look pretty for very long. This type of photo shoot is commonplace for a professional Food Instagrammer—by this term we don’t mean the people you see in restaurants whose stomach will keep grumbling till their newsfeed doesn’t have an aesthetically pleasing photo of their brunch. Food bloggers and enthusiasts have created a world of #Foodstagram, where they give the world of social media the gift of sharing an endless supply of luscious dishes, bringing in followers by the thousands.
Foodstagram has grown into an empire which is not only being noticed by food aficionados, but the corporate world as well. “Once you hit 5k followers, the small offers start rolling in; companies want to send you their products, to be featured in your posts, or just be mentioned in one of them,” says the handler of @tashasartisanfoods, “But once you start growing beyond 10k, there are offers to be paid to feature certain companies, to tie up with them at events, etc.” Successful Foodstagram accounts get business opportunities ranging from book deals to brand ambassadorships.
Getting a Foodstagram account to a stage where it becomes a source of influence and income goes beyond posting well-framed and edited photos of appetizing food. Foodstagrammers need to create a unique brand for themselves.
“It took me two years to identify what my followers like, to define the storyline of my content, which could connect to instagrammers and at the same time reflect my identity,” says Hina Bisht, the handler of @funfoodandfrolic. These popular food feeds have a unique personal touch which keeps their following loyal. They engage with followers and other accounts extensively, making Foodstagram a tightly knit unit. It allows food enthusiasts all over the world to unite in their passion for desserts or healthy cooking.
But Foodstagramming isn’t all fun. Even if you manage to keep up the good content and socialising facet of the account, half the work of a successful Instgrammer lies ahead. Hashtagging is an art that Foodstagrammers must learn to perfect; then there’s posting at an ideal time, keeping in mind the different time zones of your followers, tagging the right people to get more recognition and much more that goes into each post. These time-consuming practices don’t always ensure success, driving several Instagrammers to hire professional social media services which use bots —specialized ads and meticulous plans to push their clients forward in the competitive, demanding world of Foodstagram.
At the end of the day, all their work is well appreciated by hordes of followers, who become invested in Foodstagram accounts. It gives them inspiration for new recipes and sumptuous images to be tempted by. It also allows them to value and appreciate well-made food.
The world of Foodstagrams may have been popularized earlier by Buzzfeed, and famous chefs like Jamie Oliver, but it has now reached all corners of the globe and is filled with its fair share of Indian-run accounts. Here are some of those accounts which are making the most of the platform provided by Instagram to share their passion with the world and create the best content.
1. Shivesh - @shivesh17
While it is common for most 20-year-old students to struggle to find a balance between academics and social life, Delhi University student Shivesh Bhatia’s non-collegiate activities are quite unique. Running one of the few verified Indian Foodstagrams, Bhatia has made his mark in the world of desserts through his ingenious recipes and exquisite photography. While political science may be his major, he has made a name for himself from his passion for the art of food. On his feed you will see a plethora of sweet treats, from mulberry cakes to coffee tarts, each post being painstakingly styled.
2. Monisha - @singh.monisha
New Zealand-based restaurant manager Monisha Singh has garnered a following of almost 50,000 with her bright and colourful posts of healthy food. Her yoga and naturopathy training shines through as she shares her thoughts on peace, strength, balance and love on several posts, making them not only pleasing to look at, but a positive addition to your feed. Singh’s Foodstagram frequently features creative breakfast ideas and treats like this chocolate tart which she makes at home for her family.
3. Hina - @funfoodandfrolic
Delhi food blogger Hina Bisht left her job as a financial analyst to pursue her true passion, food. It proved to be a wise decision as she has not only gained a loyal following of foodies from all over the world, but has also been exposed to several professional opportunities including restaurant reviews, food events, travelling opportunities and more. On her feed you will see banana cake served in an Indian thali or pulao packed with nachos for the lunchbox. This fusion of different cuisines with classic Indian dishes makes for interesting combinations and reflects her love for wholesome food thats close to home.
4. Meera - @nutriliciously
California-based blogger Meera Nalavadi has built up popularity for her globally influenced dishes with an Indian touch. Her recipes are based on conscious cooking, making sustainably sourced, healthy ingredients her priority. Nalavadi’s feed clearly reflects her wholesome and green food choices – from Mediterranean bowls to zucchini noodles, there is no shortage of delicious and nutritious meals to try out.
5. Natasha - @tashasartisanfoods
Recipe developer, blogger and food caterer Natasha Minocha has made Instagram her creative space to share new ideas and the treats she makes for her business as well as home. Her bright, delightfully eclectic feed expresses her food philosophy – happy, healthy and sometimes indulgent. Here you will see everything from beautiful smoothie bowls and salads to rich chocolate caramel tarts. Minocha believes in balanced eating and ensures that her ingredients are healthy, fresh and local. Her feed will be a warm addition to your feed, inspiring you to eat good food and seek nutritious alternatives.
6. Amisha - @thejamlab
Amisha Gurbani—jam maker, food blogger and contributing editor to TheFeedFeed—grew up in Mumbai and now resides in California. She runs a successful Instagram account which is increasingly gaining more popularity in the Foodstagram world. Her feed reflects her passion for jam making, experimenting with recipes, traditional Indian cuisine and overall nourishing food. On Gurbani’s page you will see dozens of jam based treats, delicious Gujarati dishes, eye catching cakes and more. She shares what she cooks for her family and enjoys making at home; giving her feed a warm, personal touch.
7. Parvathy - @acupcakeforlove
Lawyer turned food blogger Parvathy Rohith has delved into her long-time passion for food - picking up photography, travelling and developing recipes. She believes that food is an all encompassing experience and strives to make hers as flavourful and nutritious as possible. Her feed is an interesting collection of her varied experiments, which range from Indian uthappams featured here, to strawberry caramel brioches. Rohith calls food an art, and ensures that all her creations look and photograph as good as they taste.