Creative flow has its high and lows. As much as I’d like to execute what’s in my head directly to the image, it’s not as easy as it looks. I have to collaborate with my partner, the fantastic photographer behind all of our images, Rosa Clarke. Like any two people working together on a project, we can disagree, debate and end up on completely opposite sides of the spectrum. There are many pairings that have only made it to the “Files for Discussion” folder. When brainstorming, the colors are the focus, but obviously the components of the dish need to make sense. As a Chef, I make it a priority not to just pair items for the sake of color.
“The Air Jordan I “Bred Toe” is going to be an easy one”, Bobby says.
Rosa replies, as always, “Can you prepare the food and let me do the composition first?”
This is a common exchange leading up to shoot day.
Dish 1: Tuxedo Cheesecake with Raspberry Coulis
The cheesecake came out perfect; the coulis was leading towards maroon. After remaking the coulis with a thickener, rather than sugar, the color was “better”. Then, there was the problem of the Oreo crust not being dominant enough to accentuate the black in the pairing. After a few composition shots, many eye-rolls and frustration exhales, the shoot was abandoned. The cheesecake was left in the basement fridge, the shoe sitting atop its box for inspiration and the brainstorming starts all over. We learn something from every shoot. We had so many successful shoots prior. This one, transparency related to “just not feeling it”, no matter how much it disappoints the other, resurfaced.
Dish 2: Tuxedo Cheesecake with Raspberry Coulis (Yes, really!)
A few months later, we discussed pulling the Bred Toe out for consideration again. Cheesecake was still the go-to, as the colors were comparable the first time around. Composition was discussed going with a circle-cut of the cake, rather than a square-cut. This would help with visual representation of each color and component. Again, We just couldn’t agree on the right shot; closeup, black background, white background, etc. Another cheesecake bites the dust, as we were headed out of town the same week and both still unhappy with the pairing.
Dish 3: Tuxedo Cheesecake with Raspberry Coulis (Yes, one more time!)
In hopes of getting it right this time, I prepared the cheesecake again. Immediately, it was identified that this shoot was definitely not meant to be. Rosa had a short-notice request to travel for work. I came up with this grand idea that I’d do the entire shoot on my own.🤣🤣🤣While on this short journey, I realized that the cheesecake had to go…permanently! Not giving up on it, I immediately took time to brainstorm what would be the next attempt at getting such an important shoe on the Shoe Your Food feed.
Dish 4: Coconut Milk-Poached Cod/Squid Ink Pasta/Blistered Cherry Tomatoes
As you can see, the Bred Toe finally made it to the feed almost a year after the re-release. As the shoe, the food has the elegant look and character of a New Year’s Day dinner. We finally agreed on the pairing and the composition. The multicolored background also made for a great shot. We have behind the scenes, cutting room floor and the Best of Unedited Shoe Your Food tv. We look forward to bringing you plenty to the website. Feel free to leave feedback and inquire about the various shoots.