Appetite to Learn With Chris “Ludacris” Bridges | Aundre Larrow | Skillshare

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Appetite to Learn With Chris “Ludacris” Bridges

teacher avatar Aundre Larrow, Photographer

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Learning Experiment with Ludacris


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About This Class

In this at-home learning experiment, discover new talents with Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, as he learns how to create flavorful food photography with Aundre Larrow.

Chris “Ludacris” Bridges is a multi-talented rapper and actor, but he’s ready to take on new skills and discover hidden talents. In this one-on-one session with portrait photographer Aundre Larrow, Ludacris learns the basics of shooting food photography to create vibrant, appealing photos that make food look colorful and appetizing. 

Together, they explore plating and food styling, reflecting and making use of natural light, and how to frame and compose beautiful photos. Watch as Ludacris brings his curiosity and flair, along with his signature style and personality. Want to join in and work along with them? Grab your camera, get ready to plate some beautiful food, and bring your appetite to discover your own hidden talents.  

Meet Your Teacher

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Aundre Larrow



On my fifteenth birthday, I got a Minolta Srt-101 film camera from my high school theater teacher, Mr. Tempest, as a gift. Within 3 months, I had blown all my money processing film filled with portraits of fast friends and loved ones. Ten years later, not much has changed.

I'm a Brooklyn-based portrait photographer and Adobe Creative Resident who has spent the last few years shooting editorial and lifestyle content for clients and personal work. My work has always pursued the truth that can be found in portraiture. 

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1. Trailer: What's going on? I go by the name of Chris "Ludacris" Bridges. I'm a rapper, actor, and today, a food photographer, believe it or not, thanks to Skillshare. You could be a photographer, but food photography, that's something totally different. You are setting everything to be perfect. I love it. I can't wait, man. Get nice and close. I like that angle you're choosing so much. Perfect. Yeah. Look at that. Explore your creativity at Skillshare because learning new shit, it never gets old. 2. Learning Experiment with Ludacris: What's going on? I go by the name of Chris Ludacris Bridges. I'm a rapper, actor today, of food photographer, believe it or not. Thanks to Skillshare. How we looking in Georgia today? It's great man, I wish you could see the background. It's like a perfect day outside. Wow. It's like 76 degrees, it's sunny, there's not a cloud in the sky. So we feeling good. Honestly, I think you should have an eighth career as a weatherman. I'd watch that everyday. I've never had that suggestion, but I might take that into consideration, man. I always love different side hustles where you can have multiple streams of income. You've had a really long career, doing a lot of different things. How's your mindset as an eternal student? I'm just curious person, period. About everything in the world. I feel like there's an unlimited amount of education that you can give to yourself and that's the best way, self-improvement. You said that you're really passionate about photography, so that puts you at film, music, entrepreneurship and now photography. When did you first wanted that interests bud for you, what lit that fire? I'm one of those do-it-yourself individuals. Even if I end up hiring someone to do the job, I've always been that way, I have to at least understand the fundamentals of everything that goes on around my life and my family's life. So with that being said, if I was traveling somewhere with just my family, then I'm not about to hire a photographer to come with me. I'm going to become the photographer. It started that way and then all of a sudden, I started having an affinity and a love for it. Then I started buying different lenses in different cameras. All of the sudden, I actually could do this. The only problem is, you can't video record yourself by yourself. Sometimes you need someone to stand the distance from you and do it. But you can put it on that self timer, like a [inaudible] also. Hey, can we curse on this? If anything, I want to encourage people while I'm doing this Skillshare to continue to learn and continue to be a do-it-yourself because you can learn anything, especially over the internet. You're here right now, I'm a stranger and you're trusting me to teach you something. I'm not trusting you just yet, I'm going to see how good of a teacher you are and I'm a judge for myself from the duration of what we have going on and then you let me be the judge on whether you a good teacher or not. I'm just giving you a chance, that's all I'm doing. I give everyone a chance. look at your hair and my hair is pretty similar, I got to give you a chance. Yeah. If you just reach under your toes, find a report card or something. You can just send off for me after that. Stereotypical photography or the regular photography, whatever you want to call it. Shooting from a distance, doing all these different things and food photography. What the hell is the difference? You could be a photographer. But food photography, that something totally different. That takes a whole other type of skill set. So that's really why I'm here today because I'm confused on what the difference of regular photography and food photography is man. I could shoot close up, I can do this. So many things that you have to deal with, especially when you're traveling. There is light that you don't control, there are people that are in your shot. But food photography, from the ground up. It almost resembles painting in a way because you are setting everything to be perfect. You have so much more control. But because food is something you see every day, food photography, it's so important for you to be able to translate exactly what the value proposition of that food is to the user immediately. What plate color contrasts well with this? How's the light hitting this? Yeah, it's like taking it a step further and things just absolutely looking perfect. Like in all the damn commercials that we see. When we go to these restaurants and food looks absolutely nothing like what you see on television in a commercial. Food photography has to look perfect. So I get it man, I like you as a teacher right now. It's only been like five minutes, but I'm digging your style. I'm going to be honest with you, I'm already learning something. I haven't even picked up a camera yet. However you choose to shoot food, you don't have to do this like Pinterest level where it is looking absolutely perfect. You can make it messy, loud. You can make it whatever you think is best, based on what you think the people at your restaurant or looking for. You want to just include all these little details, so that people are excited. Just like you're excited, I want to be able to help us translate that with food. Tell me about this restaurant. What inspired it, what are the main corner principles, what are flavors and tastes I'm looking forward to seeing if next time I'm in the Atlanta airport, which is actually in two weeks. Chicken and Beer, it's so simple. It's one of those things where yes, it's just chicken and beer. But how do you expand this and make it a complex restaurant. Because you add so many different things there. A lot of different beers and there's a lot of different ways that you can cook chicken. So while we were talking about there are certain great songs in the world that no matter when you hear them, you remember what you were doing in your life during that timeframe. That's how I feel a great restaurants should be, a great food should be. That's what Chicken and Beer is all about. Who to hell would've thought a third album that went triple platinum would turn into an actual restaurant. So that just lets you know, sky is the limit. Go after your dreams, continue to learn, continue to evolve. If you don't evolve, you'll evaporate. Have you ever heard that? No, but I'll take it. Don't evaporate, continue to learn. I have some little things to show you to make sure the textures look good, the colors look good and we're focusing on our light. Let's get started. All right, I love it. I can't wait, man. Let me grab my little camera, hold on a second. Okay, guys. Here's my Canon, I'm ready. Now listen, can you take like chicken wings, can I take some of the pictures of some chicken wings with this thing. I feel like you could the next 10 Fast and Furious movies with that. Hell yeah. To take great food photography, your first step is just understanding your camera. I know you shoot on a Canon already, I also have one here. Yeah. You normally shoot a 50 millimeter. Do you know what the aperture of that lens is? One point two. One point two. Oh, we have the same one. Great. I knew you're going to trying to test me. See, I know what I'm talking about. It's no test, I just want to know so I can explain it. Our main focus when we're shooting the food is our aperture. Aperture essentially is how much light the camera light in. The bigger the hole is, the more light it let in and the more depth you'll get. Number two is how quickly the shutter opens and closes. We're less worried about that because the food is not going anywhere, unless you eat it. I'm a manual guy by the way, I tried to do it as much because then you continue to learn. Just like we started off talking about. When you put it in manual, it forces you to learn every single detail of all of the specifics, so I love manual mode. You never want your shutter speed to be less than the inverse of the focal length. This lens is 50 millimeters, so you do not want your shutter speed be any lower than a 50th of a second. So this is food photography or all photography? All photography, but food specifically because with food, since the food will not be moving and you'll be moving if there is. If you move at all, it'll be really obvious. Got it, that's good to know. There's essentially three different ways to take good food photos. There's overhead, which we're looking at right here. So for overhead, you can do little patterns or this is good for like soups, grits. I know that you have grits there, and Southern food in general. There's a lot of really good texture in a mac and cheese, in the waffle and the chicken. So we're actually going to spend most of our time shooting at a lower angle and really focusing on the texture that we want. The thing I want to ask you is, where's the light coming from in the room? Where are the windows? The light is right here to the front of me for the most part. Food doesn't move and sometimes the light moves. So you need to be able to add or reduce light. The white side adds light and the black side cuts it. Just adding a subtle piece of white to bounce it, is a much more helpful thing that you want to do. See, this is interesting. This is the stuff I need to know. We're getting somewhere, man. I'm loving it. So we have two different color plates here. We have a smaller plates that are deep blue, then we have this soft gray here. For the most part, Southern food is warm colored and it's a little bit softer. So I think it's really important if you look at how this plate lays on the table, we have appropriate contrast. If we were to put grits on this, you wouldn't be able to see the detail as much. Let's say it served them like a bowl style whatever. The chicken and waffles in the restaurant. It'll look appetizing because you're plating it there. But if I were to photograph the chicken with a bowl style, it's going to be hard to see the texture of the chicken. It's going to be hard to see the texture of the waffle without shooting it from above. If I shoot it from above, then I don't get that same drizzle of the syrup coming down, I don't get that texture when you look at the differences between the breading of the chicken and the waffle. There's a lot that's miss there, so that detail is important. All right, look what I just pulled out an oven. Check this out, Southern hospitality itself. Okay. This is Chicken and Beer is finest, this is pretty much the signature dish. You got your chicken, you got your biscuit, you got your greens. Of course, the sweet potatoes. All just made with perfection and made with all types of love. If you have food isn't cooked with love and affection, then I don't want it. I don't want it either. So what the hell do you have in front of you? So we got some olives, we got some mashed potatoes, coleslaw, we got some chicken and waffles. Got some black eyed peas and some sausage gravy. I know when we first think about waffles, so I'm turning it actually to the more toasted side, so that when I place it down and I put chicken on top of it, you can see it more easily. That chicken looks a little dry. Listen, it looked like you got to eat that chicken in the rain my brother. I don't know what you going to do about that. Oh, man. But let's finish the lesson and we'll figure it out later. The first thing I want to point out is as you're looking at this, since it's on the smaller plate, you'll see immediately the waffle is taken up the whole plate. So when we're doing portrait photography, you never want to have your subjects shoulders take UP the whole photo, it's like a mug shot. You don't know how big they are, you have no sense of size. So everything just seems too large. That's not good when you're shooting people. But food, larger than life. Yeah. I would love if you could just slide the chicken just a little bit to a corner of the waffle, a little more of the corner so I could see more of that waffle. Yeah, is that better? Yeah. See you've got it right there. You see that mac and cheese, that's a really lovely plate color. Yeah. Contrast and compliment. Yeah. That's a quick example. I take this avocado and we place them on this plate. Your ability to see the details a lot worse than over here. If you don't mind for a second, I going to take a couple of test shots just to see what I'm looking. You're in a halfway angle right now, Chris. Yeah. So I either want you to be completely above it or I want you to meet it at your eye level. Think about the eye level of a child. A child seeing this food for the first time. They'd get down, they look right at the thing, almost like they're about to grab it. How's that? Yeah, that's good. Basically what my goal is this tripod is to show you how these angles are different. So here, you are doing this before. It was an in-between angle where it's a little high, but you're not really seeing a ton. So what I would actually want you to do is to get a little bit lower. Now, all of a sudden you can really see these ridges in details. Oh, wow. Yourself looking good and you have good background, good texture. Let me see what else, let me see the catfish again. Of course, man. Expect nothing less from me, this is what I do for a living. Wow, that's beautiful. Why don't you pull the catfish a little closer to you at the end of that table. Then just go ahead and even if you stand up and just give it a little bit of squat, get nice and close. I like that angle you're choosing so much, that fish is wide. Yeah. I want you to shoot, so that instead of shooting it like this, side-to-side, I want to shoot it so that I see the front of the fish. Got you. I want to turn it. You want to guide the eye of the viewer. Yeah, that's good. That's good. Now, just give me a slight off, just a little bit to the left, a little bit to the right. Rotate that. Yeah, perfect. Yeah, look at that. So just another photography thing, your eye always goes to the brightest part of the image. So if you put something super white or super bright right in front of it, it's going to be really distracting. See if yo can get a little bit lower for this one. Okay. Good detail. The chicken looks moist, nice. Hey man, one of us got to have some moist chicken. That mac and cheese is wow. I've been wanting to shoot this, man. The lighting is perfect for it. Keep moving around the piece, so you can see what you think works best. Somewhere around here seems like the best. Perfect. Yeah, that looks beautiful. Man, this is hard work, man. Like you said. Damn. I'm exhausted, I only taken five pictures. I'm ready to take a nap. I don't know about you. So let's say we are shooting a dry chicken, something else to point out. Add a little olive oil on a brush and just tap the piece of it to give it that glisten. Then you take this bounce card, add a little bit light to it. Yeah, that'll definitely making glisten. I like that. It just makes it just glisten up to look good. Food photography can make serving people if the photo is right. Eat certain kinds of food that they never even wanted to try before. A 100 percent. I'm confident about that. Definitely makes you want to experiment. Listen man, thank you for opening my eyes and I've already learned something, I'm extremely appreciative and I've gained a lot of insight into exactly what I was so confused about before we had this session. I think the best photos are the ones you take of the people you love and it's made with love and you shoot it with love, it can't lose. You took the words out of my mouth, man. Thank you very much for this. The future looks bright and the lighting looks bright for all of the food that I will be shooting. Absolutely. I look forward to it. I'm already following Ludacris on Instagram, so let's see what happens next. Hell yeah, my man.