Take a look at this month's issue of Where Women Cook Magazine and you will see me featured along with one of my newest recipe illustrations!
|(click for a closer look!)|
I illustrated this Lemon Tart recipe specifically for this feature. Last year in the dead of winter I was thinking "What kind of recipe would I want to see in March?" And I think I nailed it because I could totally go for a lemon tart about now!
I was also asked to write a story about my take on illustration and food. Here's what I had to say:
"Illustration and cooking are both things that I’ve been doing for as long as I can remember. The difference is that when I was a child, illustration was simply “drawing,” and cooking was more along the lines of messy experimentation than a demonstration of culinary talent.
My first successful food illustration was for a national contest held by Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes when I was a little girl. My mom gave me some paper and crayons and told me to draw a picture of Tony the Tiger. I set up my “studio” in the grass of our backyard and got to work. My drawing featured Tony eating his breakfast on a table in the forest. The legs of the table were made of growing trees, so he was miles up in the sky as he ate and looked down over his domain. I’m not sure if I even realized that it was for a contest, but soon we received word that I had won! First prize was a brand new bike. I had that bike for many years; it symbolized my early lesson as an artist that something wonderful can happen when you mix the subject of food with the right creative concept!
Cooking didn’t really become a passion until my grandma passed away. Every Christmas Eve she would make a traditional Danish dessert called Risalamande; it’s rice pudding folded with whipped cream and a single almond is tucked into the mixture. My grandma made it her own by serving it with a strawberry sauce instead of the traditional cherry sauce. She passed away right before Christmas, so that year I decided to make it in her honor even though she didn’t leave a recipe to follow.
Figuring out the recipe was a labor of love. I like to think that she was there guiding me through it. Every year when I make this dessert, the measuring, stirring, simmering, and familiar smells bring my grandma back to me. I know she would be proud that I am carrying on her tradition because she always cooked for us with love, and that’s the part of cooking that has become so addicting for me.
I’m very detail oriented and when I cook, and I like to know where I’m going — what the dish will look and taste like when I’m done. When illustrating a recipe, it doesn’t always work like that. Many times an idea will pop into my head and all I have to do is put it to paper. But sometimes, like with this Lemon Tart illustration, I just start with a color palette in mind and everything works itself out as I draw.
Most of my recipe illustrations are favorites that I’ve made over and over again for friends and family. If I can delight them with the tastes of the recipe, I hope I can delight you with the illustration of it and inspire you to make it for someone special in your life. With love of course!"