Olive Oil, Sea Salt & Pepper
OLIVE OIL, SEA SALT & PEPPER
While working on my cookbook, Olive Oil, Sea Salt & Pepper, there was no doubt that food images would play a big role. Finding the right photographer to work with was more of a challange. I was lucky enough to work with food photographer Renee Comet who not only did the photography, but also acted as a guide to this first time cookbook author & food stylist. Needless to say, 120 images later, I feel even more in love with food images, and the process that goes into it.
Initally I was hoping for 340 images for my book.... I had no idea what I was getting myself into. As I toned it down, 120 semed more reasonable. After all, it's one of the reason's I buy cookbooks, to look at the pictures. I want to eat with my eyes first.
All of the images above, and most of the pictures used for this website are taken from Olive Oil, Sea Salt & Pepper, and shot by Renee Comet.
I continue to work occasionally on projects with Renee who is based out of Washington DC. Visit her website for more mouth watering images
Who knew that out of 700 cookies, none of them would make the cut to serve as advertising for tax preparation services in the media for the Internal Revenue Service’s “Free File”program. I made close to 300 more on set until we found "THE ONE". Perfectly imperfect, this cookie would make it's debut mounted on several platforms in print and online. Additional variations in this campaign included coins, a stick of gum and French fries. The cookie and coin images were also used in clever animations (bite-by-bite, the cookie disappears).
Photography by Renee Comet
FOREIGN POLICY MAGAZINE
Food’s basic purpose is to nourish. For its’ cultural, political and historical aspects, Foreign Policy magazine focused on some of these intriguing angles of international food in a package of essays, including, “How Cookbooks Explain the World,” by economics professor/author Tyler Cowen. I was fun styling these illustrations for three of the stories (with photography by Renee Comet).
In “Recipe for Living: Add Rice. Stir.”, war correspondent Anna Badkhen tells moving stories about sharing similar, humble meals of rice with families in a range of impoverished, war-torn countries, from Afghanistan to Mali.
In “Austerity Lentils,” Joanna Kakissis, a writer and NPR’s Greece-based correspondent, reflects on her Greek family’s multigenerational recipes with touching personal memories.
MAKING COMFORT FOOD HEALTHY
For these shots, NIH / NHLBI needed images to match their healthy style comfort food recipes.
In my opinion, the goal in food styling is to make people hungry! The misconception about food styling is that inedible items are used to create perfect photos. That may be true in some instances, but I think the imperfections in real food is what makes it look so appetizing. I had a lot of fun cooking on-site for this Burger 7 shoot with Renee Comet. We used all of the in-house items from the line, and smashed the ground beef on the flat top, to make them look perfectly imperfect!