Category Archives: Food

Did Someone Say CUPCAKES?

Those who know me understand and accept my addiction to those delicious little treats and the local cupcakeries that feed that habit.  Most know that when they ask me where to go, the #1 place on my list is Dippidee in Lehi.  I mean, talk about heaven on a plate!

This is still one of my favorite images, taken last year, of their red velvet cake.

I don’t get out there as often as I like, in fact, I think I need to make a special trip and pick up some goodies I can hide from the kids in the back of the fridge.

The problem is that I have found that photographing cupcakes is FUN!  I can’t get enough.  My head is filled with ideas.  Well, I couldn’t wait anymore.  I decided I needed to learn how to make pretty cupcakes.   So I researched online, I bought books and I bent the ear of my friend, who made these:

Well, I finally got up the courage to make my first batch ever of home made butter cream frosting.  To be honest, it wasn’t good.  In my butter cream, add a little more emphasis on the BUTTER than the cream, and you might understood what it tasted like.  It did, however, make for a pretty decoration.

Here is my first self frosted cupcake.

So not bad right?  Yeah, it looks so much better than it tasted!  LOL!

Well, I am getting better.   Though I have yet to make a cake from scratch, (I totally cheat and use box mixes) my frostings are improving, in taste anyway.    Here are a couple from some semi successful attempts.

Lemon cake with raspberry cream cheese frosting:

Lemon cake with lemon butter cream and coconut:

Vanilla cake with raspberry cream cheese frosting and pretty pearls:

I know, these will never be as good as the sweet creations at my favorite haunt, but for pictures, thankfully, they don’t actually have to taste good, just look like it.

And my new motto:

Candy and Cutie

I was totally just messing around this morning and my two year old could not resist coming to check out what mommy was doing with the candy on the table and not high out of reach where he shouldn’t be able to get it but still does because he is the most stealthy little creature on the planet and “child proof” is not in his dictionary.

So here is a fav of the candy jars.

And here is my HUGE two year old… okay, not two yet, but he will be in two days and since he is as big as a 3 year old it doesn’t much matter anyway does it.  But really, could he be cuter with that California blond curly hair?  Nope.  And I am chomping at the bit to find out who taught my kids to say “cheese”!  They shall have a good talking to I tell you what!

Happy Birthday to Me!

I have to say that I am THRILLED that so little people remembered my birthday this year.  It’s over, and it was quiet and wonderful that way.  I hate a lot of attention on my birthday.  I just want a lot of attention every other day.  Is that too much to ask?

So why do I bring it up you ask?

Well, because this year I got the two best presets ever.  Like in my whole life and I had to share them.

The first was from my hubby.   I was home from church with our sick little one and he sent me a text telling me where I could find my gift.  I thought about waiting to open it until he got home, but that thought lasted about 30 seconds, and the long beautiful jewelery box was opened.  Inside it had the most beautiful bracelet.  It had emeralds, which he chose in memory of our sweet baby Charlie, whom we lost in May (Emeralds are the May birthstone), and it also has the infinity or eternity symbol.  This is how I have always felt about my Charlie.  He never got to join our family in this life, but he is still my baby, and I look forward to holding him in the next life, forever.

I cried when I saw it, a few times, and I cried again as I wrote this.  It just means so much to me.  It’s the best gift I have ever received.

Now, present number two!  Not nearly as beautiful, not even close to sentimental and yes, I bought it for myself.  Actually, when I went to wash this before the first “use” it felt very wrong to be placing this into hot soapy water.  It looks at feels so much like the real thing, I was sure I was going to ruin it by getting it wet.  But no, its fine, and functions as it should, as the coolest mug on the planet.  I filled it with DARK Hot Chocolate, as I am a real woman and real women always go dark, and flavored it naturally with a bit of peppermint candy cane.

Seriously, every photographer should have one of these, and yes, if you are not cool enough to be a Canon shooter, they make a Nikon version.

More Beautiful Cupcakes

So I am pretty sure I have the sweetest job, and in more ways than one.   Here are more of these beautiful cupcakes.  I can’t believe the detail this woman puts into every little cupcake.  These were for a little girls birthday party.  Can you imagine something like this at your child’s baptism or wedding?!   Her website will be up soon and I will send you all her way as soon as it is.

Not Real Wine

I am always on the lookout for different foods or items I can shoot and try different techniques on. I had recently read a couple of tips on shooting wine bottles and wanted to try some out. Well, I don’t drink wine, so I was on the look out for a realistic looking bottle of sparkling grape juice when I found this. It’s wine, with the alcohol removed. It was funny, because I still felt strange buying it.

I set up with a new technique I had read about, not my usual two light set up, and was really happy with the results. I was going to do some with an actual poured wine glass next to the bottle, but apparently, you need a cork screw, which I didn’t own, but do now, so look for a take two in the near future. 🙂

Taking Stock: Harvest

After the loss of my son early in my pregnancy, I found an outlet that was both a distraction and very healing.  I spent hours and hours at our new garden plot, which turned into plots x4.   I weeded and tilled the ground and mixed in the fertilizer (cow poop) and other nutrients.  I spent time at various nurseries finding the plants I wanted to grow, some starts, some from seeds.   I formed the rows, I set up the water, I tended it, weeded it, cared for it.  I found that when I was stressed or upset, just one hour in my garden made my feelings turn around.  Anger and sadness would quickly turn into contentment and peace.  I LOVE my garden.

More now than ever as I have watched my little sprouts turn into a literal jungle.  We have lots of pumpkins that are getting so big and making me excited for fall.  Watermelons that are about the size of a quarter.  We have already made quite a few dishes from squash, including a very yummy curry.  But just recently the tomatoes have started getting color.  The plants are huge, our yellow pear tomato plants are taller than I am and more wild than my 18 month old son.  So I went today, crawling beneath branches and between stalks of corn and digging into plants.  We gathered quite a bounty, much to the delight of my eight year old who eats tomatoes like they were candy.

Here are the fruits of today’s labor.


Do you remember those beautiful cupcake pictures I did a little while ago?  The ones with the beautiful fondant work?  Yes, those ones!  Well, the talented woman who created those works of art made a collection for my daughters birthday party today.  I had let her know it was a horse theme and I had hoped for maybe a silhouette of a horse head or something.  I was blown away by the beautiful cakes she brought to the party.  The kids were more than impressed but that didn’t stop them from devouring them after we sang Happy Birthday.

Here are some pictures I took of them before these works of art were all eaten up!

Here is a close up of three of the four featured cupcakes.  I love the detail she put into the horse’s mane.  I really didn’t expect all that we got.  She went above and beyond.

Here are the silver horseshoes and flowers, AND check out the one with the lasso on the bottom!

And the whole collection on display:

Thank you so much Nicole for putting so much work into making these cakes so memorable for my daughter and for me.

What's For Dinner?

Pizza! And though my kids ate the whole cheese pizza before I had a chance to photograph it, I did get a few shots of mine and hubby’s pics. I love diced tomatoes on pizza. Though I have never had any as good as I did from Louise’s Trattoria when I worked at Paramount Studios in California, I still have to have them on my pizza. Canadian Bacon and pineapple for the hubby. I order that pizza just for him because the kids won’t eat anything but cheese and I, sadly, am allergic to pineapple.

(Not like anyone actually reads this blog, but what do you think of the new watermark? Too intrusive?)

Food Photography: Italian Bread

Again, just wandering through the store and this bread was too pretty not to photograph. I honest wish it tasted as good as it looked but I will take the rolls my Sister-in-Law Mary anne bakes over this expensive store bread any day of the week.

(Mary, why don’t you make me some bread I can shoot?)

Food Photography: Blue Bottle

Have you ever asked yourself, “What’s the most expensive bottle of water I can buy in the grocery store?”. I didn’t either, but I am pretty sure this is it. I am always looking out for things I can take home and shoot that are unique or I can practice different lighting techniques on. Well, while grabbing the 6 pack of bottled orange soda I was originally going to shoot, I looked up and saw this on the shelf, next to a red bottle just as pretty (which I bought, but haven’t shot anything really yet…). How much did this beautiful bottle of sparkling water run me? $5.00! Not bad since it’s now a studio prop and I will never drink it or throw it away, but it’s so pretty!