Friday, February 28, 2014

Food Collage Turns 3!

I can vividly remember that day three years ago I impulsively decided to start this food blog. I didn't know it at the time, but that was the fateful moment that would lead to some amazing experiences and an immense love and appreciation for my new hometown. I think my reflection post from the blog's first anniversary said it all. And in these three years, much like those early toddler years, I have experienced tremendous development in my skills as an amateur photographer and home cook.

Personally and professionally, this past year has been my busiest yet, with one consequence being significantly reduced time for blogging. But boy, do I miss it! It's funny, because blogging can seem like such a one-sided, solitary activity, yet the longer I go without blogging, the more isolated and disconnected I feel.

In addition to being insanely busy, I'd have to admit that my already limited free time has been made even more limited for another reason. Like a toddler, I am always curious. I love to explore, learn new things. I am never satisfied with complacency. Variety, as they say, is the spice of life. While I still enjoy food photography tremendously, I have at times felt that I have reached a plateau to some extent, and that further skill development would necessitate the kind of space, setup, and equipment for which I do not have the resources (or time!). For that reason, I have found myself devoting more of my time to other ways of satisfying my creative and artistic curiosity—like painting, landscape and nighttime photography, and video editing—none of which has much of anything to contribute to my food-centric blog.

This, of course, is not to say that the past year has been a dud—quite the contrary! I developed an awesome recipe for my perfect homemade pizza crust along with a number of successful experimentations with various pizza toppings. I continued to explore new ways of preparing venison. I took a Thai cooking class, fell in love with soup dumplings, tried Filipino and Nepalese cuisine for the first time, and have also been trying my hand at slow cooking, with results coming soon to a blog post near you. :) But perhaps the highlight of the year was a collaboration with nine other bloggers for the Perfect Pittsburgh Saturday series of posts where I described my love for "Stripping" for food. Last but certainly not least, I continue to make friends with and support local small businesses whenever I can. I also have a few very exciting food-related projects for the upcoming year that I can't wait to share on my blog!

So while it has been a slow year at Food Collage, I haven't stopped remembering that day three years ago when I started this blog and how much it has enriched me. Thank you for your continued support of my humble project.

It has become a tradition of sorts that I share a photo collage on each anniversary of my blog. This year, I thought it appropriate to combine my food photography with one of those new skills I've learned this past year, and the result is this photo slideshow featuring one photo from each blog post since last February 28. Enjoy.