Meet Mark

Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

Tell Me More
Stay Connected
September 11, 2007

Food Fashionistas

By Sara
18 Comments

McDonald’s breakfast burrito: ad vs. reality.

Looking for a new career? Love fast food? Food styling is a fabulous option!

Food stylists – not to be confused with false advertisers – inject, primp, plump, puff, mist, sparkle, and gussy up tired buns and stale shrivelings to look delicious, colorful and appealing. You can thank Elmer’s glue for those crispy bran flakes preening proudly in glistening “milk” (as pictured on the box). Cocoa is often made extra frothy by way of detergent (wonderful, but is it phosphate-free?). Gels, glazes, styrofoam, paint, and plenty of tweezers for all those pesky stray sesame seeds – well, these tools are all in a day’s work for a food stylist. Food styling is both deceptive and legal, so give McDonald’s a call now!

Many of the articles covering this exciting career are careful to inform you that what you see advertised may not be an accurate depiction of what you’ll get on the tray! Oh, come now. Has anyone ever ponied up to the counter, ordered a Big Mac, and expected anything more than a haphazard, forlorn stack of beige, peach, and dun? What’s more surprising to me is that Americans know packaged, processed, and fast food rarely, if ever, lives up to the depiction..and yet it still flies off the shelves and out from the heat lamps.

Further Reading:

What Does 4,000 Calories a Day Look Like?

Fried Lattes, Finally!

Subscribe to Mark’s Daily Apple feeds

TAGS:  Hype

Subscribe to the Newsletter

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

Leave a Reply

18 Comments on "Food Fashionistas"

avatar

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Oxybeles
Oxybeles
9 years 2 months ago
It is just like a professional Cake Decorator, but with more options. Nothing wrong with adding flair to a salad, is there? Creatively carve your radishes, cucumbers, and tomatoes(quite the challenge). As a guy, I just wash, cut if necessary, and put them in the bowl. Others may want to experiment. Some young kids, and older ones for that matter, play with their food. Perhaps they are the next Picasso or, most likely, Dali in this new field of Food Stylist. Lastly, in comparison to Hair Styling, the subject of the endeavor will not bleed, unless it is Raw Food,… Read more »
McFly
McFly
9 years 2 months ago

Oxybeles has a good point.

There’s definitely a spectrum to what’s going on. The fish sandwich honestly doesn’t look that different. Just a fluffier bun and better lighting, which is expected in any professional photo. We don’t take family pictures of Dad in his boxers with a beer, mom with an oversized snoopy sweater, and two kids covered in sandbox dirt and magic marker.

The Wendy’s chicken sandwich on the other hand is a pretty far stretch.

Crystal
Crystal
9 years 2 months ago

What about the teenage employees in the ads? Happy, enthusiastic, thin, polite, and ready to serve. “Welcome to McDonalds, how may I help you”? Now, that’s a stretch…

josh
josh
9 years 2 months ago
Did you really waste your time writing about this? More importantly, did any of us really expect to improve our lives in any way by reading it? What’s my point? Knowing that false advertising in food exists is the same as knowing that smoking causes cancer. We all know the assertions of how great it looks are untrue. I was a food photographer for many years. Its true that there are a lot of tricks used to make food (if you call McDonald’s food) look better. But many of your assertions are untrue. I have never met a food stylist,… Read more »
Josh
Josh
6 years 8 months ago

Chode..lol

Crystal
Crystal
9 years 2 months ago

Wasn’t a waste of time at all. Highly entertaining and made me laugh because it’s true. Go back and look at the arbys cheddar melt. He he he. Is that fit for a commercial?

Sara
9 years 2 months ago
Hi, Josh, I didn’t waste my time writing this – I happen to care about it and find it interesting, though I make no promises or guarantees that everyone who reads my words will feel the same or have their lives changed. Namely because that’s just not possible, much as I might wish I were the perfect blogger to suit everyone’s needs in advance of knowing them or their preferences. As for glue and detergent, while that wasn’t information included in the linked articles, I distinctly remember reading that some years back in a print magazine. Unfortunately I couldn’t locate… Read more »
Dave
Dave
9 years 2 months ago
It’s really not surprising that something photographed by a professional photographer looks much better than the same thing photographed by an amateur with a consumer grade camera. That’s why people hire pros for their weddings rather than just taking some random shots with a cheap digital camera. These photos are hardly “deceptive”. Much of the difference in appearance can be explained by the better colors and focus in the professional pictures. All of the food components are there in both cases in reasonably the same proportions. No one is going to be confused by the fact that these sandwiches might… Read more »
Sonagi
Sonagi
9 years 2 months ago

You don’t know what deceptive food packaging and advertising is until you’ve spent time in China.

Brian
Brian
9 years 2 months ago
Josh you know you should really at least go and do simple Google search before you criticize someone who researches for a living. It might in the future save you from looking silly, but to each their own. Your own personal experiences aside, there are pages of results from practicing Food Stylist and Photographers about methods used to present food -and yes GLUE is mentioned many times, as is motor oil for syrup, and the use of many other non-food products, all in the pursuit of making food look appealing. As for your truth in advertising reference, you may want… Read more »
Oxybeles
Oxybeles
9 years 2 months ago

Sara,

I think it would be great if you were a Republican, I wouldn’t feel so lonely, or so out numbered, on the Board. πŸ˜‰

Just remember that a Healthy Lifestyle has no political preference. It is truly for Everyman or Everywomen to be PC!

Sara
9 years 2 months ago

B – thanks for the great additions and quotes! I owe ya! πŸ˜‰

Oxy – Libertarian all the way baby! (Wait, I just let the cat out of the bag…) πŸ˜‰

Sonagi – I think we’d all be interested in hearing more about that!

chris
chris
9 years 2 months ago
Brian, Someone who researches for a living knows, or should know, that links to uncited internet articles or google searches aren’t going to stand up as credible fact. You can’t use hearsay as evidence in a court of law, and you certainly can’t use it in any sort of scientific endeavor. Sara should carefully consider things she presents as fact but can’t cite or verify before publishing, such as the glue/detergent examples in the above article. Having said that, this is a blog, and it should be assumed that blogs are unsubstantiated opinions at worst and ‘infotainment’ at best. In… Read more »
Bradford
Bradford
9 years 2 months ago

It’s not just food…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hibyAJOSW8U

I think it’s splendid what Dove is doing here. Smart and honest advertising. Or is it just ironic advertising?

Brian
Brian
9 years 2 months ago
Chris, I didn’t realize this was a court of law or scientific endeavor, and if it were I might agree, but as you also say it’s a blog and an opinion, and I for one don’t have a problem following links to get to the original source article, or reading multiple source to make up my own mind on something. But hey that’s what makes the internet fun, right? You can read, consume, research and decide for yourself, because even “facts” from documented “sources” are only as good as their representation — hmm… NY Times … or better yet… OJ… Read more »
Crystal
Crystal
9 years 2 months ago

Yes, good video Bradford. I thought Dove was into the natural look.

Oxybeles-Why do you feel alone? Did we take a poll when I wasn’t looking?

shelly
9 years 2 months ago

Hilerious photo. So true.

wpDiscuz