Skip to main content

Monatsarchive: June 2013

Lemon Yogurt Cake & An Ode To My New Town…

Lemon Olive Oil Cake

I have to start this post by going over an email exchange I recently had with a reader. I think it was quite enlightening on both sides from various reasons. He sent me a message asking if there was still spots available in the workshop Tami, Mindi and I are teaching in Birmingham, Alabama in July. (details here) My answer was a resounding and honest "Yes! Would love to see you there!" and here is part of the exchange that ensued that made me profoundly sad and just as excited.

Him: that’s great! But why on earth Birmingham, Alabama?!!

Me: ? what do you mean?

Him: it’s A-la-ba-ma. Ugh…

Me: hey! I live here now!  Have you ever been to Birmingham? Alabama?

Him: No.

Me: then why the prejudice? Preconception?

Him: I so wish you had it in Atlanta, like the one in April.

Me: so you’ve been in Atlanta? Georgia?

Him: No.

Me: seriously now. Why not Alabama?!

Him: you know, history and stuff. People. Not much happening there.

It went on a bit longer but I will spare you the dialogue format.



Yes. Alabama has a troubled past. So does Georgia. So does South Carolina from where I hailed. So do many states in the US. So what…? It made Alabama history that much richer. Its residents that much aware of the outside view the rest of the world has on them and their desire to prove it wrong that much stronger. I am proud new Alabama resident. I have fallen completely in love with Birmingham and the state surrounding this amazing growing city.

Troubled past makes your present. Your present does not have to follow suit to your past however. Birmingham is full of life, full of neighborhoods vibrant with people casually meeting up for a glass of wine on their back deck or walking over to the nearest neighborhood par or restaurant. Pockets of life, bursting with creativity. Artists, galleries, studios. A music scene bursting at the seam. Many a James Beard nominated and winnning chefs. The food… Oh my, the food. Alabama is not red pick up trucks and barbecue. It is. But it’s also so much more…

Summer berries

One thing that struck me about Birmingham was not only the incredible food scene and how friendly people were (and I come from friendly city Charleston…and we got nothing on Birmingham. Trust me!), but how lush, pristine, clean and green the city was. And how much it was nothing like I thought. And I am sure a lot of us thought. And think. Still. That conversation with a reader is not new or unusual. I am happy to change their minds or at least show them some of the attributes that this city bears.

Birmingham hosts Southern Living magazine, Cooking Light magazine, Oxmoor House, Hoffman publications and numerous crazy talented photographers, food stylists and prop stylists. And I had no idea about that either when I got a call to consider a photo position there. And I was blown away. And so happy to be in this mecca of talents. Both culinary and visual.

Wild Blackberries

If there is one city to discover on your map this year, Birmingham should definitely be it. If there is creativity boiling inside of you but no one to help you harness, shape and deliver it, this city definitely deserves a second look. And more. It’s almost ridiculous to me how much Birmingham has to offer and that I find myself in the midst of it. Yep. Call me a proud new resident.

So, would you join us for a weekend of learning, sharing techniques, tips? Tami, Mindi and myself can’t wait to see you here. Where arts of all forms meet and create. Where Southern charm intertwines with urban sophistication. Some spots are still available. Details HERE.

Lemon Olive Oil Cake

 In the meantime, I am leaving you with one of my favorite cakes. The first one my grandmother taught me how to bake. The quintessential "Gateau Citron Au Yaourt" or Lemon Yogurt Cake.

read more



Registration for the 2 day Food Photography & Styling Workshop in Birmingham is now open! 

To register, please visit HERE

We are so excited to be able to bring this one to you and to share our experiences, tips and techniques with you. One photographer, one food stylist and one prop stylist in one studio over two days. Woo!


Blueberry Key Lime Tea Cakes

Here is a recap of the workshop: (more details and info about it and the instructors on the registration page)

When: July 27th-28th 2013 

Where: Birmingham, Alabama 

Workshop limited to 12 

Fee is $1250 and includes: 

– 2 days full of instructions with three established professionals 

– lots of demos and one on one guidance 

– meet & greet on Friday July 26th from 7pm til 9pm, 

– dinner Saturday night (location TBA) 

– lunch, snacks and refreshments for both days 

(travel costs, transportation and lodging not included)

A Two Day Food Photography & Styling Workshop In Birmingham, Alabama, July 27th – 28th 2013


Have you ever wished you had someone explain in an easy way how to tell a visual story through a photograph? How to work with natural light, wherever you are? How to diffuse and bounce, highlight and contrast in the best way possible? 

 Have you ever wondered how on earth you would style that awkward yet wonderfully delicious sweet potato casserole? How to style and photograph cocktails, drinks and steaming cups of coffee? 

 Have you ever wondered how a prop stylist layers and composes a shot to compliment the food? Where does it all start? The food? The props? The camera angle? 

How does it all come out together to create images that make your stomach growl they are so appetizing? 

Well…how about a workshop with three instructors, highly skilled in their respective fields to take you through all this? Over two days?! 


Tami Hardeman, Mindi Shapiro and myself are doing it again! This time, in Birmingham, Alabama where Mindi and I reside. Our first workshop together was such a success that we are bringing you another one packed with challenging shoots, great foods and lots of hands on practice. (read more about the instructors here)


The class is targeted to all levels and all three of us will be there to take your photography, food styling and prop styling to the next level. Gently and efficiently, we will give you the tools to let you express your creativity with your styling and photography. 

We have listened to people’s plight and are excited to bring a workshop that will focus on the "toughie" items to style and photograph such as cocktails, casseroles, spreads and dips of all kinds, etc.. We may or may not throw a holiday theme shoot in the mix.

The Driftwood, Hotel Deluxe, Portland Oregon

Here are the details: 

When: July 26th – 28th 2013 

Where: Birmingham, Alabama

How many students: 12 

How much: the workshop fee is $1250 and includes: 

– meet & greet on Friday July 26th from 7pm til 9pm,

– 2 days full of instructions with three established professionals, Saturday July 27th – Sunday July 28th

– dinner Saturday night (location TBA)

– lunch, snacks and refreshments for both days (travel costs, transportation and lodging not included) 


Package is all inclusive. No substitutions. Schedule subject to change. 

There will be no refunds for this workshop – please know you can attend before you register. 

 Registration will open on Monday June 3rd at 8:00am EST. Please go here to register.