Getting your first light is a daunting enough task (more on that in another article). However, choosing your first modifier can be even more intimidating. With so many choices in both brand, price, type, and then sizes too.

There are plenty of great modifiers that can offer a range of looks for food photography, but when starting out and looking for a versatile and easy to use option, there is one modifier that I would highly recommend

The Softbox

For the majority of food photographs, we are trying to recreate natural looking light. The flash is merely a means to an end. A way to allow us to get the perfect settings, no matter what the available light is.

Most food is eaten near a window. With a softbox you can remove the fabric scrim/diffusion material to make it seem like a sunny day, or add it in to make it seem cloudy. Then you have the shape and catch light of a standard rectangular window.

They can be purchased cheaply like this one here or if you use Elinchrom, Profoto, or Broncolor lights, you can buy more elaborate ones that give a better quality of light.

Taken with a high quality softbox to camera left