Behind the Lens with @holhomei

Posted on March 3, 2021 by Alexandra Leung

Logo of @holhomei which translates “So fxxking delicious!”

“Being creative is not a hobby, it is a way of life!”. This week we catch up with Chris, AKA @holhomei, a Hong Kong student as well as a top user of the Dishtag app. Chris tells us about the journey of starting her foodie account during the pandemic, and some useful photography tips.

Can you tell us a bit more about yourself? What do you do besides your passion for food?

Hi! My name is Chris. I am a university student studying in Hong Kong. I started this account on 13th January 2020, about the same time that the pandemic started: I had so much time staying at home back then so I started to sort out all my food photography. Then I realised I had gone to so many restaurants and eaten so many delicious dishes, so I decided to set up an account and share my dining experiences with others, and I also invited my friends to join me. For me, enjoying delicious food is definitely the best way to release stress from studying. Besides eating, I also love making music and taking photos with my friends. 

How do you see the role of food photography on your social media accounts? Do you find your followers more inspired by the photos or by the comments?

As Instagram is a visually driven social media platform, people are definitely more focussed on the photos shared rather than the caption below. If your photos are attractive, it is easy for you to get likes and followers as most of us like Instagrammable and eye-catching photos. Therefore, food photography definitely plays an important role in my account. However, in my opinion, it does’t mean that we need to neglect the importance of the content of the caption and comments below, as it’s not enough for the audience to know whether the restaurant is good or bad by just seeing the pictures you posted, so I put a lot of effort in the comment section. Apart from providing honest feedback, I try my best to give some recommendations to the restaurant to further improve their service or food quality. I hope that my comments can be beneficial to both the consumers and the restaurant. 

What gear do you use to document your dining experiences?

Just me, my friends and an iphone.

Can you share your very favourite food shot on your Instagram? What’s the story behind? 

There are a few shots in my account that I like the most:

Golden Open Toastie at Cloud Nine Specialty Coffee

I love the lighting and setting of this photo. It was taken with my first foodie friend @hungrypiggiess. She taught me a lot on how to find a place with good lighting and prepare the setup for food photography. I have learnt so much from her, and seeing her taking photos made me realise how much effort is required to achieve good quality pics.

Cheeseburger at Burger circus

I asked my friends to hold the burger for this photo. It was a fun experience and the photos turned out really good!

In your point of view, what kind of food image is the most engaging content on your feed?
Caramel Pudding at 十常八九 (Sap sann)

 

Sea Salt Caramel Cheesecake at One Tenth Coffee

Desserts are the most engaging content in my account. I think that is because people always want to eat something sweet to treat themselves, as life is hard!

Your photos on the Dishtag app also look great. As a frequent user of the Dishtag app, what do you like most about it?
Beef Brown Cake W/ Poached Egg Sourdough at Ethos

Dishtag is a platform for me to communicate with other foodies and friends. I like the photos here that are displayed on full screen. Also, I love the layout provided for taking food photography in the camera, that gives me a great baseline for my food photos.

Your photos look so yummy and inspiring! Could you give us a few tips on how to take great food photos even when dining out in non-optimal situations? 

If there are many people in the surrounding or the background is not clean, just zoom in the object or get your camera closer to the object

Crab Pappardelle at Untitled Cafe & Bar

You can use your hands or you friends’ hands to hold the food or a fork / chopsticks to make the photo look more interesting. In this photo, you can see that my friend is pulling the spaghetti up while I am taking the photo. Also, I think what makes this a good shot is that is really close up on the spaghetti.

What is your favourite type of food to shoot? 
Avocado Egg Benedict at Bakehouse

My favourite type of food to shoot is cheesy food and runny egg yolks. They are both something really satisfying to look at!

Open Lasagna, wagyu beef ragu at JEP by Involtini

Look at that melted Cheeseeeeee!

Favourite restaurant in HK?

It’s really hard to choose one only so I’ll list three of my favourites:

  1. Bakehouse: I remembered that I queued for almost 2 hours on a rainy day in order to enjoy the brunch dishes there. My favourite dish at Bakehouse is gotta be the Shakshuka, such a great example of comfort food.
  2. Coffever: Reasonably priced and high-quality food. 
  3. The Pizza Project: Can’t forget the Carbonara pizza there, it’s so special and delicious,
What advice would you give to new food bloggers?
  • Communicate with other foodies through social media or Dishtag
  • Learn from others: check out how other bloggers take their photos while developing your own style.
  • The uniqueness of your content is the most important element of your food blog
Discover more ‘behind the lens’ photography tips from fellow foodies:

Behind the Lens with @little.miss.picky

Behind the lens with @chufooddiaries

Behind the Lens with @fm.feed