I'm a very sporadic blogger. Finding time to sit and write and add images is sometimes beyond my capabilities, as I'm often tied to the kids, or the housework, or actually finishing real photographic work... well, blogging takes last place. Actually, not last place... doing the bookwork is last, but we won't talk about that here.
For a long time, I've wanted to move more seriously into the world of food and editorial photography. I've always wanted to shoot a cookbook, for one of the gorgeous food magazines, and for clever businesses producing food products. That stuff doesn't just land in my lap like other kinds of work, so I decided that this year was the time to do something about it.
I need a new portfolio, of images that really show what kind of photographer I can be, and what I'm passionate about. Food is one of those things. I also needed to practise my craft - actually remind myself of the myriad things I need to consider to make quality work. So, the images here are my experimentation, not some carefully crafted and tight collection of finished pieces. These are my daily attempts.
I'm working from home, with the things I have here (including a few new acquisitions that have come to me via various kind people). I'm shooting the things we eat, that (mostly) I cook. I'm not a pro cook, and I really don't want to be a food blogger - I just want to shoot it. But, in lieu of hiring a chef, which we are not rich enough to do, I needed to make / source the food myself. I'm also short short short on time. So, each of these images is made with between 5 and 15 minutes of shooting, with a modicum of setup and post processing. I had to be fast - my family wouldn't like me very much if I devoted much more time every day to a project that doesn't bring in any cash!
I am very inspired by classical art - particularly the old masters, the flemish painters, artists like Caravaggio, Artemisia Gentileschi, Vermeer... the light quality, the often quietness of the images. Some photographers today are creating work that is in a similar vein, and they too provide inspiration. Bernard Verkaiik shoots in a clean, simple way that gets my imagination going. But I need to be new - not just copying those who came before. So, I'm experimenting... and sometimes these folk might be seen as an influence on what I am doing. Sometimes it's more commercial... the Donna Hay magazine imagery makes me want to cook... so I'll try a bit of that too.
Instagram is a space I find highly satisfying, because I can act as curator of my own gallery. I have a personal account, where I post pictures of my kids, and a business account, where the serious photography lives. The ability to make an image happen, and then put it somewhere that the world could see it, is a very enticing thing for me. So, it's my tool of choice for publishing the images I make for my business at the moment. Follow me on Instagram by searching @amberjaynebain and you'll see the best things I'm doing at the moment.