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My first Photography Challenge

Updated: Apr 30, 2023

Do not be afraid to challenge yourself to be challenged.

When I first began my food photography journey, I did not know where it would lead me. I just knew I discovered something that encompassed so many of my creative passions and that I had to trust the process and just open the door and take the leap.

Through starting my Instagram account I quickly connected with an amazing community of other passionate food photographers and recipe developers. It gave me an incredible support network that I needed to believe in myself and validate that I actually could perhaps make my own mark in this niche photography world. The incredible talent and creativity that I have discovered in this process has been mind blowing and the kindness and community support has been overwhelming and heartwarming.

Thanks to the internet, I have made new friends around the world, that I can learn from and share my passions with. It made me discover a whole new world of photography that I didn't know existed. It has really been incredible.

Through this newly discovered world, it has also connected me to photography challenges specifically oriented towards food. I knew early on, that this was definitely something that I would want to take part in. I just needed to build up the courage to do so.

This past week, as if the world new what I needed, a challenge showed up on my Instagram feed. The Food Art Project Aimee Twigger ChalIenge. A challenge hosted by @foodartproject and @thesouthasiankitchen and judged by Aimee Twigger from @twiggstudios . Sponsored by @fifbackgrounds and @organized.ceramics .

The challenge was three days long and was all about the color BLACK.

Each day had a different theme, but with keeping the overall challenge theme in mind.

The entire challenge was extremely tricky for me. I wanted to stay true to my style which, until now, has been very bright and clean, usually full of color. So having Black as a theme was definitely out of my comfort zone.

But I guess that is why they call them challenges, and that is exactly why I wanted to push myself to participate in some.

Here were my three entries:

DAY 1: Hero the color, BLACK

(Let the color black outshine in your photography)

I really struggled with this one. Firstly, I read about the challenge on the first day of the challenge, so I had little time to brainstorm and just had to make something happen. Secondly, what foods are actually black? Short of baking a black cake or using black food coloring, what could I use? I didn't have time to both bake and take a proper challenge picture given my time constraint, so I used what I could to try and make an overall 'Black' picture.

In the end, I was happy with the composition of the photo and the color story, but would have liked to have made it even darker. I was very proud though to have given it a go and it gave me the determination to make entries for the two upcoming days.

DAY 2: BLACK: Inspired by Aimee's use of Shadow and Silhouette

(Inspired by Aimee's play with Shadows in her work)

Without darkness there would be no light.

Darkness is lights best friend. It is what gives us depth and shape. The space that brings beauty and emotions to life.

I felt that this entry needed to allow shadows to play. Let the swirls of meringues in the late afternoon light show us the beauty of what darkness brings.

To see the complete entry with music pairing follow the link to my instagram:

For this entry I had more time to brainstorm. Knowing there had to be shadow play in this one, I had a very clear image in my mind as to what I wanted to accomplish in this photo. I wanted it to be free of color but to showcase black with the help of white. What better food to do this with than meringues?

I am really pleased with the end result of this photo and my family was really pleased that they had yummy meringues to eat because of it.

DAY 3: The Color BLACK and the Emotion it Evokes

(A color of many sentiments: Power, Sophistication, Mystery, Solitude)

BLACK: Strength and Elegance.

It brings contrast and mystery to light.

Simple, yet complex.

It is the Yin to the Yang.

To see the complete entry with music pairing please follow the link to my Instagram:

For this entry, I didn't have a clear image of what I wanted. I just knew I wanted it to be clean and simple. I was lucky that there was beautiful natural sunlight the morning of. My kids had just finished a breakfast of homemade waffles and everything seemed to come together in a few minutes.

I love how this entry turned out. It feels like me, and I think it conveys what I was hoping it would.

I would love to hear from you and know what you think or how these images speak to you! Please feel free to leave comments!

I am definitely on the lookout for more challenges like this. It was really fun, challenged my creative brain and taught me a lot about light and composition.

Up until now, I was shying away from shadows in my work. But this challenge has definitely shown me that shadows actually contribute so much emotion to a scene.

I didn't think that I would enjoy this challenge as much as I did. Just goes to show, don't be afraid of trying new things. Especially outside of your comfort zone. There is always something to learn from every experience.

Click here to read about an other food related challenge I participated in.

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