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Comfort food at Town Hall…

In my interview for a book proposal with the guys responsible for Town Hall, a restaurant in San Francisco, one of them asked me, “So, are you a food photographer, is that what you do?’

I said, “No, I photograph people.”

Maybe that isn’t the best response when you are interviewing to take photos for a cookbook… but I am a horrible liar.

I explained that I photograph people, but because I lived on a farm for a year and a half, I have taken photos of food, but usually, that food is still on the farm and being held by the farmer. I showed them what food photos I have and they agreed to give me a chance, because they like “messy.”

I was not offended. I would say my photos are pretty messy. I don’t do much fussing or arranging; I just take the photos.

That being said, on the day of the shoot, I suddenly got nervous when Mitch asked, “So what do you want to do?” I didn’t have any preconceived ideas. All I knew was, I was supposed to show comfort food in a comfortable and urban setting… which was the restaurant. I started thinking that I needed a stylist, I couldn’t do this alone… and I needed lights…  but I didn’t have either of those.

So, I took a deep breath and gave myself a pep talk and started looking for good spots of light throughout the restaurant. All we needed for the proposal were eight photos… I could do eight photos.

After I relaxed, and the food started coming, and the fog started burning… it all came together. I had lots of fun and I felt really good about what we accomplished. But the best part of it all was I got to eat that bowl of yumminess at the bottom. Toffee, chocolate and butterscotch equals pure comfort in my book.

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A day of edible beauty…

Well, I wanted to boost my food photography portfolio… so I made it happen at Windrush Farm, with the help of the Gardening, Baking, Styling, and Photography Dream Team…

Most of the veggies and flowers were grown and harvested by: Rebecca Bozzelli at the Sonoma Garden Park, Paul Wirtz at Oak Hill Farm and Mimi Luebbermann at Windrush Farm.

Pizzas were made from scratch by Mike the Baker Zakowski, also from Sonoma.

The ingredients of the day were styled by the talented Esther Feinman (with her arsenal of pretty things) and her fabulous friend Stacey.

The location and many of the props were graciously provided by Mimi Luebbermann of Windrush Farm.

A big thanks also to:

The Firestarter/Male Model/Comedian Arann Harris.

Nick from Nik’s Chix for the eggs.

Jude Mooney, my photography partner who will soon be displaying her own version of the day, and her super helper daughter, Dixie.

The gorgeous James family for modeling, yet again.

The people behind Parducci Wine who generoulsy gave us wine for our wedding in exchange for photography.

Christy, Mike’s wonderful girlfriend, who helped with anything that we needed help with.


Here’s to teamwork and more amazing dinner parties on the farm with fresh food and wonderfully talented friends.


You Just Have to Wait…

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I had an amazing Sunday… it was full of yummy fresh homemade food that was grown, prepared, baked and styled by incredibly talented people. And I can’t wait to share my new collection of food photos… but you just have to wait… because this is slow food. I only have 300 more photos to sort through and then I’ll be ready to share the very best.

By the way, that pie up there… I made it! It is my very first made-from-scratch strawberry rhubarb pie… thanks to a little help from my dearest friend Rebecca and the Joy of Cooking.

More pie and other tasty treats coming soon.

Food Glorious Food…

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Since my arrival in California in 2001… I have eaten countless amazing meals. The new culinary world I landed in opened doors for my tastebuds that I didn’t even know existed. So you would think, this being such an important new adventure for me that I would have better documentation of this new edible adventure. But I don’t.

I just ate without stopping to document, let alone chew.

So when asked to present the samples of my food photography, I am embarrassed to say that I don’t have too much to show for my 8 years in food bliss. I feel guilty when I think of all that potential that was just consumed without regard to my future photography needs.

Even tonight… Arann made a beautiful dish of pasta with colorful veggies that he arranged perfectly in a bowl with complimentary colors… and as we sat on the front porch to eat, I said, “This is so pretty, I should photograph this, especially since my task is to present beautiful food photos.” But I didn’t…. I just dug right in and started shoveling that pasta until it was gone.

And as my punishment… I spent the evening digging through all my external hard drives searching for anything that I could justify putting in a food portfolio. My selection is pretty slim. I do have lots of butchering photos, from my farm living days, but I am not quite sure that is what the editor called for.

So from this day forth, I vow to do a better job of recording the food that is presented to me, before I quickly ingest it. In the meantime this is what I have, thanks to my gardener friends and a few: PR gigs, camping trips, Easter buffets, weddings and magazine assignments.

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