Food Styling Course at Leiths School of Food & Wine – the final verdict

I have been thinking about this review and it has taken me a while to fully digest my experiences on the food styling course (no pun intended!).

There are many positives I can take from this course – I have discovered that food styling isn’t as hard as I thought it was. My confidence has been boosted and I have gained a few more skills as well has developed some more ideas.

As one of my fellow students said, it was an interesting course, but they didn’t feel they would be able to go out and become a food stylist afterwards. Slightly worrying comment I felt, but sadly agreed with. In fairness, the course is billed as one which, “is suitable for those looking to explore a career in food styling”, but I’m not sure that at the conclusion anyone would feel in a strong enough position to ‘explore a career’ in this area.

I think many a trick was missed – there should have been more scope for students to shadow food stylists. As far as I know only 1 person was given that opportunity, having won a name-in-a-hat ballot. I also emailed the course leader requesting feedback, but after a couple of promises, I have yet to receive any.

I also found it odd that a student contact list wasn’t created and distributed, as I think that would have gone some way to unite the class members and aid networking. There wasn’t an opportunity to give a formal end-of-course feedback either, which was particularly strange, especially for a course that is still in its infancy.

The standout highlights were the demonstrations lead by Jennifer Joyce in Week 3. Week 2 was also very good, a class which was co-lead by photographer Stuart Ovenden. It would have been very useful if we were given the opportunity to have some of our own food photos reviewed with his ‘professional eye’, particularly as Stuart takes all the end of course photos.  For most of us, this was the first time we had worked with a professional photographer, and you can only learn so much in a 10 minute photo shoot at the end of the course.

So is this course worth giving up your Tuesday evenings for 6 weeks? In the majority, yes. Yes, if you want to get a basic idea about food styling. Yes, if you want to sample a Leith course before you commit yourself to the other rather pricy but more substantial courses. Yes, if you want something to do on a Tuesday evening other than watch Eastenders!

I was lucky, I managed to gain a place on the very over-subscribed course prior to the almost 60% price increase.  Overall it was a good course, but there is alot scope of improvement, and it would have been more effective had we received more feedback and guidance on our own work.

Rating: 2.5/5

Food Styling Course link

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