Take Five with Girl Eat World's Kamini Pather

They say we eat with our eyes, but photos hardly do justice to how absolutely delicious our favourite dishes can be. Still, social media shows no signs of slowing down on the food-photography front. As our news feeds fill with decadent pictures of scrumptious food, we can hardly keep our tummies from grumbling or our fingers from tapping 'like.' There's a reason they call it foodporn!

Leading the local food scene on social media (and killing us with her drool-worthy #eatgram photos!) is one of our favourite online personalities, Kamini Pather. Winner of SA MasterChef 2013 and the face of her very own food and travel show Girl Eat World, she knows a thing or two about what makes good food - and how to share it with her digital  audience.

We were thrilled with the opportunity to sit down with Kamini and chat with her about all things social media - including her stellar career and how she manages to make our mouths water on Instagram.

Kamini Pather's Girl Eat World debuted on Food Network in May 2015. 

You have a really active social media presence. What inspires you to keep it up?
People inspire me to keep going. When I get feedback about how my life has allowed people to live differently or explore their worlds more, that makes me feel as though the time spent on creating digital content is worth it. 

Why is it important for a personal brand to be on social media?
It’s direct access to your audience. I have felt powerful when I have interacted with brands (personal or other) through social media. It has made me feel as though I was closing the degrees of separation.

Who are some of your favorite social media personalities?
I am obsessed with Instagram and have many people that I adore. @manmakecoffee is a beautifully curated coffee-lifestyle account. The Pretty Blog is a locally produced profile that started as a wedding-specific blog, but has ventured into lifestyle and food. Rene Redzepi is the chef at NOMA, the number one restaurant in the world. That is a bucket list destination for me. His IG account documents the crazy produce that he finds in Denmark and Australia, and how he uses it. 

You also really active on Snapchat. What do you like about it?
I enjoy the way Snapchat groups snap from popular world events like Easter, or Holi in India or the bombings in Brussels. It’s a very real view of how people live. I am obsessed with Dj Khaled on Snapchat. I can hear my brain cells popping but he is the train wreck that you can’t tear your eyes away from. 

What's the most surprising thing that's happened to you because of social media? 
I get offered jobs via social media. I am developing a book and the publisher who propositioned me with this idea has been following me on IG and contacted me. My job hadn’t been invented until recently and that’s all thanks to social media and the digital world. 

We love your #eatgram! What tips do you have for amateur food photographers on Instagram?
Look at other IGers and their style of photography. See how they use props, cropping and above all else, LIGHT. Do not use the flash for any photograph. Not any. 

How important is it to engage with your audience on social media?
That’s the point, is it not? No engagement means no followers.