...Okay, not really.
But still. The Mexican food there was awesome.
In the spring 2014 I moved back to Oregon to take a baby step towards my giant, sweeping dream. In my ideal life, I'd live on a big ranch out in the Oregon countryside, freelancing as a photographer and cookbook author. I'd have a Jersey cow, named Henrietta, and she would look like this:
and have a calf that looks like this:
I'd have a chicken coop to pick fresh eggs out of every morning, in addition to my pair of goats, whose milk I would use to make feta cheese in my basement/cheeserie.
I'd have a garden filled with flowers and heirloom fruits and vegetables, along with a special plot dedicated to the plants whose seeds I received from my parents, who have been carefully selecting, harvesting and drying only the most prized seeds from their immense garden for the past 30 years, and those plants would make the other plants look bad if they were all up on them.
There would also be olive trees, too. The cold Oregon winter would most likely destroy them, but I would plant them anyway on the off chance that they would survive. My Greek side won't let me listen to things like reason. And this is my dream, after all.
The house would, of course, be a true-to-life recreation of Thomas Jefferson's Monticello because A) It is incredibly beautiful, and B) I am a huge nerd for the founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson in particular.
But alas, I am instead living in the city with my
He doesn't always look so serious. Only when he is hiking.
Gabel is kind of neurotic, even for a cat. But he does weird things that make me laugh, and he does kind of look like a Jersey cow, so at least there's that.
The yard here is wonderfully huge compared to our LA garden, so much so that I kiiiind of don't even know where to start. The tomatoes I planted this year are flourishing and I've made a little berry patch in one corner of the yard that I'm hoping will be my reliable pie and jam source. After tilling these small areas of the yard by hand, I realized that there are lots and lots of rocks on our plot. Almost a suspicious amount of rocks. My theories are that 1) the land used to be at the bottom of a riverbed or 2) settlers decided to make this plot of land a giant rock dumpsite. Either way, I have a long season ahead of me.
And I am lucky enough to have a little kitchen with a decent amount of countertop space, which is where I spend a lot of my time, and also why there is so much food on this blog.
What kind of camera & lenses do you use? I shoot with a Canon 5d
How do you get the lighting so moody? I shoot using only natural lighting and have a reflector disc with a black side that I sometimes use as a background if I want an image to be especially dark. Otherwise I just use the white wall of my kitchen as the backdrop and let the shadows do their work.
How did you learn photography & food styling? I took my first photography class when I was 15 and went to university for film production, which has a lot of similar elements to photography. But applying that to food takes a lot of practice. I taught myself food styling by pouring over my favorite inspirational food photographers' work, like What Katie Ate and Call Me Cupcake, and using trial and error.
Where do you take your pictures? I shoot and style in my dining room and in my kitchen, both of them have big windows and allow me a lot of control over the natural light that hits the shooting area.
Do you eat everything you make? Of course!!! Now, I will say that I do not eat the entirety of what I make (i.e. no, I do not eat a whole cake by myself. I'm only 5' and that would end up making me wider than I am tall!) But I do enjoy a little bit of everything, and I'd say that's my general feeling towards eating. Just try a bit of everything and you'll be fine! Unless you're allergic. Then you definitely won't be fine. But yes, I do try to have friends over when I make something particularly decadent to spread the wealth a bit :)
Do you teach food photography or styling courses? Yes! You can take a look at www.firstweeat.co
Do you accept guest blog posts? No, I currently do not accept guest posts.
I hope you enjoy my corner of the internet! If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to comment here and I'll do my best to answer. Thanks so much for visiting!