Have you ever wondered what happens when you take one of the cheapest ready-made foods on the market and combine it with some clever photography? Japanese site Livedoor News has, as it demonstrated with some instant Cup Noodle. We’ll introduce you to how they made an 88 yen (US$0.80) product look like a luxurious meal by incorporating it into a variety of settings, and of course keep your curiosity at bay with plenty of photos.

Apparently, it’s all about creating the right setting through manipulating surrounding props and the angle from which you take the shots. There were several different styles of settings that were experimented with to create a range of scrumptious looking meals. Have you ever wondered what instant noodles arranged as though they were something you ordered at your local coffeehouse, or perhaps curry house, look like? Well we won’t keep you wondering!

The coffeehouse setting with soy sauce flavored instant noodles



The trick here is to use the white dishes you would normally find in a coffeehouse to create a striking contrast of colors and thus enhance the appearance of the food. Unnecessary objects have also been removed from the surroundings to add an uncluttered appearance. It looks so appetizing that you find yourself questioning whether it’s actually instant noodles you’re looking at.

Cup Noodle at a fancy french restaurant



Again, use of white dishes so as to create contrast is important here but so is the emphasis on minimalism so as to create a sense of luxury. Arranging everything in this fashion apparently took a whopping two hours. By the way, the white dishes used in these photo shots were purchased at a Japanese 100 Yen shop!

Curry-flavored noodles at an Indian restaurant



Everything is closely replicated so as to give that local Indian restaurant feel. When you’ve got this much visual stimuli in front of you, you might be forgiven in forgetting for a moment that what you’re eating is below the 100 yen mark.

What you get when you combine noodles with your local steakhouse




That’s right, noodles as a substitute for a big chunk of steak. Maybe not quite the perfect substitute when you think about the lack in nutritional value, but it doesn’t look half bad.

Add a bit of exquisiteness to your noodles with some Japanese gold leaf (Kinpaku)




Gold leaf can be bought at Japanese department store Tokyu Hands and is sold as an ingredient to put in pastries and other sweets. It sells for 630 yen (US$4), about seven times the price of the Cup Noodle featured here. Here, the gold leaf is sprinkled on seafood noodles, making them suddenly look a lot more expensive.

How about your noodles surrounded by flowers?



The colors of the flowers add a real sense of vibrancy to the photos and surround the noodles as if they were royalty.

And there’s also the traditional Japanese style, complete with miso soup



The last photo sure does make our mouths water even if we know we are only looking at what is ultimately instant noodles.

There you have it. A bit of clever photography and the appropriation of setting might just be enough to convince you that what you’re eating goes far beyond its actual value. Or is it? In truth, perhaps the taste would paint a different picture but we can’t help admire the photographer’s efforts in making something so bland look so attractive!

Source: livedoor ニュース
Header image, inset images: livedoor ニュース