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Away In Seattle…

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

This week of cookbook styling and shooting is over. Grueling. Exhausting. Exhilarating. Soothing. A nice change of pace for me to prop and play with food. I loved every minute of it and enjoyed being in the moment but I admit, I can’t wait to get back behind the camera.

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

Working with Clare was just about the awesomest time I have had this summer. It was almost like sharing a brain. Of the good kind. The one without a misplaced ego. Clare called, asked me to style and I did just that. But the way we think and how we similarly sensitive and sensible to photography we are, made it a breathe to navigate the plate and the photograph.

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

Never the words "working together" have had as much meaning as they have this past week. Without spoken words or the feeling of stepping over, we worked together. Clare, Jeanne and I. About thirty five of the seventy five recipes that Jeanne included in her book had to be photographed. That’s thirty five recipes to be made every night for their beauty shot the next day.

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

Every night, Jeanne and I would do a perfectly orchestrated ballet of pans and whisks to bake the recipe for the next day of shooting where Clare would work her magic with the camera. Both Jeanne and I know our way around a pastry or a cake but baking for a shoot is slightly different and thankfully there was plenty of wine and good food to help us push through each night after a long day of shooting.

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

We all hit a wall at some point but we worked through them together and pushed through. Always feeling like the other helped a little. I never felt anything but support and kindness. We made a team. "We’re number two! We’re number two!" Because it’s not about us. It’s not about being number one. It’s about coming together to give Jeanne's book the best photographs. I can’t wait for you to see the book next year when it comes out!

Seattle Cookbook Shoot

I stayed with Jeanne, I stayed with Clare. I met them both in their element. I felt home. I was able to get to know them in their crafts and their thought process. I am sad to leave two wonderful talented ladies. I am sad to leave friends. I am happy to get home and share this week with my husband. Hurricane Irene, please be nice…it’s been a long week….!

Red Currants

My little homage to Clare’s blog header

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Pilarh August 27, 2011 um 1:03 am

Stay safe!

Unknown August 27, 2011 um 1:11 am

I really enjoyed hearing and now seeing how this sort of a project takes place. Thank you! Now, scurry home and be safe!

Sally August 27, 2011 um 1:35 am

So interesting to see this unfold. I hope you will get some R & R at home and that Irene will not be too mean to us east-coasters. I'm looking forward to seeing the end result of your work!

Natashia August 27, 2011 um 3:22 am

I really like seeing these 'behind the scenes' photos. I'm slowly learning how to take good food photos, but with no experience in doing it, seeing these photos helps, so thank you!

Phoo-D August 27, 2011 um 3:27 am

What a lovely studio and fun people to work with! I'll be thinking of you and hope that Irene stays far far away.

la domestique August 27, 2011 um 3:36 am

It's so fun getting a sneak peak into one of your projects! Thanks for sharing. Take care!

Karista August 27, 2011 um 4:47 am

Welcome to Seattle Helene! I hope you had time to enjoy our beautiful city. Happy Cooking!

A Former Flower Child August 27, 2011 um 7:21 am

How truly blessed you are to be able to do work that you are passionate about…and that is fun for you !!

london bakes August 27, 2011 um 8:08 am

I hope you get home safe. This was a lovely homage to teamwork! Thank you for reminding me about what's important 🙂

notyet100 August 27, 2011 um 9:48 am

Thanks for this post :)!

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga August 27, 2011 um 10:39 am

Love the shots and the behind the scenes glimpses!

So fun to witness and congrats to Clare on her book and bravo to you for helping out!

tami August 27, 2011 um 11:18 am

hard work and long hours and grueling schedules end up being worth it and end up being rewarding when the end result is seamless and beautiful. i went through that this week. i'm exhausted but happy. can't wait to see you! xoxo

– t*

Valérie (Franche-Comté) August 27, 2011 um 11:20 am

Merci pour ce partage très intéressant
Je te souhaite un excellent wee-end

Vickie August 27, 2011 um 12:20 pm

sounds like a wonderfully exhausting week 🙂

zaida August 27, 2011 um 12:33 pm

What a wonderful working time cooking and shooting!!

A Canadian Foodie August 27, 2011 um 12:37 pm

A beautiful tribute to your friendship and an artful window in the world of food photography and styling… such a life: the making and baking and wining and dining – the harvesting of the culinary art through an artistic eye and the lens… and then the writing. Your writing. Such gifts you have, Helene!

marla August 27, 2011 um 1:28 pm

Funny, it used to be I was a team of one. These days real partnerships and stepping outside myself is always best. Looks like a great time in Seattle. Congrats on another great job accomplished, *hugs*

Dmarie August 27, 2011 um 1:33 pm

best day of the summer…I want one of those! thanks for sharing the process and such lovely pics. best wishes on Irene being nice enough to leave everyone alone!!

Vicki Bensinger August 27, 2011 um 1:34 pm

What a wonderful opportunity. I have to say I'm exhausted just reading all the things you did. Good luck with the hurricane, it sounds like it's in your neck of the woods right now. Be safe!

Mirasens August 27, 2011 um 4:41 pm

Oh! I'm photographer, in Madrid and I want a studio just like that!!!

Ina Mohd August 27, 2011 um 7:13 pm

After 2 weeks of anticipation, your book Plate to Pixel finally arrived yesterday. Still at the beginning chapters and your words are soothing, encouraging and inspiring and I can't wait to get started. And the breathtaking photos… To top it off, I'm reading this entry, what perfect timing. Thank you always for the inspiration.

gfs August 28, 2011 um 8:32 am

wow, so fabulous to see a little bit of the process that goes into photographing a cookbook (especially when it's a gluten free one – whoop whoop!) Hoping you're home and staying safe. May Irene stear clear!

Simones Kitchen August 28, 2011 um 9:44 am

What a wonderful experience that must have been Helen. Love those actionshots!! I hope Irene is not too bad. Stay safe!

Anonymous August 28, 2011 um 11:32 pm

What a wonderful post! I hope you're safe in the storm and I love your homage photo…. as always, they are stunning!

It's amazing the work that goes into making such incredible photos….

Malinda Kay August 29, 2011 um 5:59 pm

helene, what photo app do you use for pics like these? love the look of them!

Ellen August 29, 2011 um 11:37 pm

Currants are way too photogenic. So beautiful, you're an extremely blessed woman!

ChichaJo August 30, 2011 um 11:53 am

Sounds like a wonderful time…hope you are all safe!

Nieves August 30, 2011 um 3:19 pm

With you three put together I can't wait to see the book!

Elina (Russian Bites) August 30, 2011 um 8:35 pm

Sounds like an exhausting yet satisfying week! Gorgeous pictures!!!

Ashley August 30, 2011 um 10:48 pm

So happy I got to see you! Already looking forward to the next time.

Ilke August 31, 2011 um 1:05 am

It is always nice to have a different location to revive our senses. And good friends!

Glad Irene did not affect Charleston as much.

Ryan August 31, 2011 um 4:58 am

I just found your blog last week and I just wanted to say that your photos are beautiful and everything looks so wonderful (which I'm sure you already knew). I live in Charleston, as well! 🙂 Well, a bit outside of Charleston, almost in the 'country', but technically still in Charleston.
So glad to have found your blog 🙂

Li Ying August 31, 2011 um 6:53 am

Have fun!

claire August 31, 2011 um 3:36 pm

Hi Helene! Just wanted to let you know that I thoroughly enjoyed "Plate to Pixel". The information, tips and resources you shared are very valuable and proved to be an AHA moment for me. I'm slowly setting up my home studio with professional(but not too expensive) equipment and I really took notes based on your suggestions. Thank you again for sharing your knowledge — you will be rewarded a hundredfold for your generosity!

Baerbel September 3, 2011 um 7:56 pm

Thank you for the photos about the shooting – very, very helpful!

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