Gina Weathersby saves the day.
It felt so good to make this Asparagus Pizza with Caper Salsa and Goat Cheese.
I've mentioned Gina Weathersby before here. A Cincinnati-based photographer, Gina has become an inspiration to me, and , in 2014 I took an online food photography narratives workshop with her that changed my food photography game completely.
Grey Salt Collective
Gina has a Facebook group called Grey Salt Collective which I think of as kind of a food photographer's support group. She recently invited one of Grey Salt's other members, Karen Gibson of Crave Veggies, to suggest a recipe as a photo prompt for the rest of us.
Karen came back with Yotam Ottolenghi's recipe for Grilled Asparagus with Caper Salsa.
Creative block sucks.
Karen shared the Ottolenghi recipe just as I was mucking about in the weeds of creative block. My creative block ebbs and flows, but man, when it comes on, it is merciless.
Blankness. Apathy. Dullness. Detachment.
These are the words I would use to describe how I feel about making pictures when creative block hits.
When I saw the Ottolenghi recipe, I thought, "Hmmmm, this sounds like it would be great as a pasta or a pizza."
A photo prompt fixed me. For now.
I spend endless hours thinking about recipes, food styling, and food photography ideas. My brain never stops, and sometimes, it takes me to the point of "paralysis by analysis", a term I first heard from an old friend. My brain becomes so overwhelmed with ideas and choices it just shuts down and can't choose anything.
Instead of deciding, "Let's do this", or "Let's make that", I do nothing.
It's the nothing that terrifies me.
So, thanks to Gina and Grey Salt Collective, today I have something.
Today I MADE something.
The blankness, apathy, dullness, and detachment are at bay.
For a little while.
Caper Salsa Recipe
adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi
1/2 cup capers, drained
1/2 cup parsley leaves, stems removed
1 lime, zested and juiced
1 garlic clove, rough chopped
1/4 to 1/2 jalapeno (depends on preference), rough chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp kosher salt
- Combine all ingredients in food processor and pulse to desired texture, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Use caper salsa as a sauce base for pizza topped with blanched asparagus and goat cheese, or as a topper for fish or chicken, on a charcuterie board as a condiment, as a spread on a sandwich, or anywhere else you like.