This has been a busy week in our home . . . . the Canadian Federal Election was called considerably earlier than anyone expected, and that changes our lives considerably until the vote takes place and things are wrapped up. Both of us have different roles with Elections Canada . . . . it is very interesting what goes on behind the scenes to provide eligible voters the right to exercise their franchise. Believe me, there is a tremendous amount to do and we will be working many long hours.
So the food preparation begins and the baking frenzy went into high gear and I savoured one of my last chances for a few weeks to have a leisurely photo shoot.
Nikon D4 with 50 mm f/1.4 lens
Dishes from a breakfast set that I have had for a decade or more . .. .orginally from Canadian Tire
Placemats . . . I believe Winnners . . . a long time ago
Ceramic white basket . . . Pier One
White Milk Pitcher . . . Home Sense
Florals . . . can’t remember . . . they have lived with me for a very long time
Linen Napkin . . . Ikea . . . I believe
Week 17 . .. Milk and Cookies . .. Be Still 52
August 3rd . . . The Studio Online . . In Corners
January of 2015 ushered in a new chapter of my life. It would be the start of the first year of full on retirement which was very exciting for me. As much as I loved my Manulife days, I could now fully plan a year devoted to doing the things I love. At the same time, Kim Klassen was offering a new gathering place for artists to grow and share. The Studio Online was born and I jumped on board. This has been one of the most fulfilling journeys for me as an artist and as a person. It is filled with like minded women who care, share and support. Truly amazing. I could go on and on . .. but suffice it to say my soul has been enriched and my art has blossomed.
Food and photography seem to go together . … Carol Hart of Seattle is a gifted photographer and a creator of all things amazing in the kitchen. She writes a wonderful blog and cooks through a different book every month. This month she chose Bowl and Spoon by Sprouted Kitchen and showcased their Lemon Creams. They looked so good, and of course the cookbook has just happened to arrive in my library recently, (shhhhh!) and I decided to try them too . ..
Used the Nikon D4 with two different lenses .. 105 mm f/2.8 and the 85mm f/1.4
The pot de creme cups are from Evesham and have lived with me foreva
The gold flatware is Artistry and has also lived with me for a very long time
Purple plates are ones I picked up from Bowrings quite awhile ago
White luncheon plates are part of the dinner set I scored at Christmas time . .. Aynsley Golden Crocus
Cookies were made this week . .. vanished . .. Lemon and Ginger . .. thought they would be the perfect accompaniment to this recipe . ..
Thanks to Carol for her inspiration.
For Easter Weekend, I like to entertain friends on Good Friday so that they have Easter Sunday with their family. A late brunch is my preference as then you have the rest of the afternoon and evening to have a pyjama day.
I chose varying shades of purple as for me that is an Easter colour . . . with a few additions, the flowers I had for last weekend are still lovely. This time I thought it would be nice to use my very dramatic china, Fitzgerald by Noritake. It reminds me of the rooms of malachite I spent some time in at the Winter Palace, and of course I love green.
This is the menu that I have chosen to serve this year.
Honey Almond Salad with Poppyseed Dressing
Salmon with Lemon & Capers
Swirled Pound Cake served with Whipped Cream & Fresh Strawberries
I just knew that these little side plates belonged in my collection of goodies and would be used over and over again, both for photography props and for actual serving of food. It just so happens that I have a dinner set of black dishes and very lovely black goblets by Mikasa, so my mind was running around in circles with ideas as I was making my way to the cash register . . . . oh the combinations I could put together for a very contemporary tablescape . . . .
Fast forward to a food photography class that I participated in last weekend. Oh so wonderful, and our fearless leader, Sandy Weatherall of Jinsei Photographics infused and infected all of us with her knowledge of 25 years in this field. Each participant had to design their own photo including props, food and backgrounds. They were all so different and we learned from each other as the creative process unfolded. For this scenario I chose to use my new-found treasures, the Bon Appetit plates, and made ginger cookies as the food item.
As part of Studio Online, I chose this diptych to portray this week’s prompt Stacked. You are given a word each week as a prompt to create a still life photo according to your vision . . . . . the creativity in this group is beyond amazing and so inspiring . . . . the creative juices just start to flow as everyone displays their interpretation of the prompt and your mind just goes into overdrive!!! If you are looking for inspiration and exploring your inner soul in the field of photography, I highly recommend being part of this community.
This photo was taken for Week 4 BeStill 52 project wherein I am in pursuit of bettering my Still Life Photography as led by Kim Klassen.
Using mid afternoon light from the bay window facing north, this photo is of a jelly roll that I made on the weekend and served up for afternoon coffee this afternoon. Now that certainly doesn’t happen every day, but it felt quite decadent to have our afternoon break together and have dessert as well.
The dishes are fine porcelain Cream Lace by Skie McGhie that I have had for some time . . . thought the lace cutwork on them was perfect for upcoming Valentine’s Day.
focal length 70 mm
Nikkor f/2.8 24-70mm
Texture used to soften kk_501
My husband’s sisters . .. twins, Barbara and Brenda have a February birthday. Seeing as how this was a milestone one . . . the big 70 . . . we must celebrate. When planning the table out I decided to take a break from red, which with the proximity to Valentine’s Day would be the go to colour, and chose to honour the birthstone colour for that month, amethyst. This was an easy choice for me, as it is one of my favourite colours and have lots of accessories that are in the purple family. I like purple so well that I think it goes with everything . . just like black!
As always, I set the table early to allow the creative juices to flow, formulate and change their mind! Happens often. Below are a few photos of what I put together. The china is Aynsley Golden Crocus . . . have always loved this pattern and just recently found 9 place settings . . . the charger plates came from Bowrings, the purple side plates and goblets are from Princess House, the gold flatware is Golden Artistry, the champagne flutes I have had for ages and were from Winners and so was the salad bowl. The vintage water pitcher have had for ages and cannot remember where I picked it up. The flowers are arranged in shaded purple epergne . . love it as it allows you to nicely tier florals. All of these treasures have resided in our home for a very long time, other than the Aynsley china which is a fairly new acquisition . . at a steal of a deal.
Polka dots . . . pretty much in any colour and on anything . . . even shoes
While in Salmon Arm for Christmas, I found this neat tea towel at a shoppe I always love to visit. It has the neatest things for the kitchen. That is also where I purchased my red and white polka dot teapot. I digress. The reason I purchased the tea towel . .. not realizing at the time that I was going to foray into still life photography . .. was that it says . .. “Cooking is like love . .. it should be entered into with abandon or not at all. ” I heartily agree.
It always gives me a great deal of joy to spend an evening setting a table for guests as we gather around and break bread together.
The Royal Albert Country Rose china was a set I inherited from my Mom. It was always her wish that I should have it as it was started for her by her very good friend and my Godmother, Ruth Johns. Over the years it grew into the most spectacular tea set and then I added the plates to make it into a dinner service for occasions when red is the go to colour. The beautiful poinsetta salad/dessert plates were the special edition issue by Princess House for their Christmas line. Of course I HAD to have them. The other items that you see on the table are just part of my vast collection of china, silverware and accessories that I have been collecting since before I was married . . . . which is more than 45 years.