Food Photography Workshop

Remember when I told you that there would be exciting things in store for this year? I gave a few teasers a little while back and holding workshops was one of them. Well, it’s no longer a teaser. It’s happening and I couldn’t be more excited!
This past year has been filled with some pretty incredible experiences, among them, shooting and producing four 513{eats} magazines, editorial assignments for other magazines, and hanging out in the very best of kitchens watching, learning, shooting and of course, tasting the finished dishes.
My goal through all of it, was to tell visual stories about people and food in a beautiful, engaging and enticing manner. Through this workshop, I’m happy to share my thoughts and approaches with you.

Natural Light Food Photography Workshop ~ on May 11th

This will be the first in a series of photography and photography/cooking workshops. Each will have a different overall theme/topic- such as field trips, foraging, farms and chefs…all with an eye on telling visual stories. I will share more about those a little further down the road.

For now, let me tell you about this first workshop…
**Although this workshop is called Food Photography Workshop {the basics} – this is NOT a Photography 101 class. I know some pretty amazing photographers who offer that course and I would be more than happy to pass their names and information on to anyone looking for/needing that before joining in on this workshop.
 To enroll in this digital natural light food photography workshop, you need to already have an understanding of your own camera and it’s manual functions. You do not need to be a professional photographer or own the latest, most expensive camera equipment to take this workshop. This workshop is perfect for anyone (food bloggers, food writers, hobbyists, amateurs) wanting to learn to improve the quality of their images and/or how to approach, set up, style and make beautiful images of food using natural light in the simplest of settings. I create many of my food images in the dining room of my own home with simple props and basic equipment, and you can too. 
My goal for this {basics} workshop is to share with you my approach along with the components of creating beautiful photographs of food that you can take with you, continue to practice with and use to create enticing images to grab your reader’s/client’s attention on your own websites, blogs or personal projects. Let’s be honest, it’s the visuals that grab your audiences attention before anything else, so strive to make engaging imagery to hold your reader’s/client’s attention so that they keep coming back for more.

You will need to bring your digital camera and it’s manual, extra charged batteries (just in case), additional lenses (if any), a tripod (very helpful, if you have one), a laptop (with all necessary cords) with your editing software, and cards/card reader as this is a hands on workshop. You will be shooting and uploading your images.

Topics we will cover:

What makes a good {food} photograph:
Slideshow of imagery for discussion.
The thought process behind a food shoot – purpose/theme/color palette/mood
Choosing backgrounds, props and styling simply (and the importance of not over-styling)
How to see and find light as well as understanding the differences in the qualities of light.
Ways to light your food.
How to manipulate light with simple and affordable materials.
How your manual settings play an important role in the artistic choices you make in creating an image as well as understanding when and why to make certain choices.
Camera Angles
Hands on shooting with foods/props and specific exercises to practice.
There will be beautiful foods for you to photograph along with plenty of props on hand for use to practice some of what we will cover.
Post Production:
I’ll walk you through some of my basic editing as well as share some examples on how I marry imagery and design for interest and impact.
You will upload and choose your favorite images and we’ll share with a show and tell of everyone’s images from the day.
I’m here to share with you and you’re here because you want to learn, so don’t be shy. Ask away, I’ll do my very best to answer anything and everything to the best of my ability.

Marti Heard of Marti’s Floral Design has graciously opened up her uber creative, colorful, and beautifully styled studio at 915 Monmouth for this workshop. You can take a peek at the studio right here.  You will immediately see a plethora of fabulous surfaces as well as beautiful light that will be available for us.
I’m also so excited that eat well celebrations and feasts will be catering our lunch as well as a light breakfast offering while we’re getting settled in. There will be no shortage of beautiful, delicious food. Thank you Chef Renee Schuler!
** If you have special dietary needs or severe food allergies, you may want to consider bringing your own snacks and lunch, just to be on the safe side. Regardless, please let me know.
Seats are limited. Full workshop fee is due at time of booking and reserves your spot.
Please know the workshop fee is non-refundable. If something comes up and you must cancel, you will be responsible for finding someone to replace your seat. Should there be a wait list, I will also help with finding a replacement.

Email me at with any questions.

Date: May 11, 2013
Time: 9:00am-4pm
Location: 915 Monmouth, Newport, Kentucky
Cost: $295 per person SOLD OUT


***If you’d like to be put on the email list to be notified of upcoming workshops, just send me an email at
Thank you!

Making Ravioli with Chef Josh Campbell

One of the perks of sharing what we’ve seen is being right where the story is happening. My favorite place, hands down, is in a chef’s kitchen. This past February, Ilene and I spent the morning with Chef Josh (of Mayberry) learning the finer points of making pasta by hand and then watching him turn it into a savory combination of Ricotta Beet Ravioli with Prawns and Shellfish Broth.

Below is some of what you’ll see in the mini gazette we created for his story.
Click any of the images to view the full story as well as the full recipes. ~Gina

photography ©Gina Weathersby




Head down the flight of stairs from 6th Street’s Boca, and you enter a whole other world. Sotto, (or below, in Italian) is the subterranean sibling, and more casual dining experience from Chef David Falk and his team. If you’re fortunate enough to be at Sotto for this Monday’s grand opening, you’ll be greeted with one of the warmest, most inviting spaces we’ve seen in quite some time. After many years, Chef Falk’s vision of an authentic Italian trattoria with a menu of comforting, “grandmotherly” type dishes has finally come to fruition.

The former La Normandie is completely unrecognizable, having been entirely transformed; stripped down to its bare bones of wood and raw brick, exuding rustic warmth you could expect to find on a holiday abroad. Small, thoughtful details are evident everywhere, including some of the light fixtures, which were handmade by chef Jono Fries, and the tables, which where all fashioned from re-claimed wood, hand hewn by Cincinnati’s own Brush Factory.

In keeping with the traditional style of an authentic Italian trattoria, the menu is filled with simple, straight forward dishes. Fresh pasta plays a huge part, and indeed there is a pasta prep room complete with viewing window for your inspection. Steaks will be fresh cut and grilled on a de riguer hearth. Authentic bruschetta, fresh vegetable antipasti, fresh fish, and pork round out the rest of the menu. An extensive list of Italian wines, beers, and cocktails will be served. ~Ilene Ross

Here a few peeks from our visit yesterday.

Photos ©Gina Weathersby

Love in a Tortilla {Carnitas}

What to make for dinner tonight? As many tried and true recipes/meals I make…I’m always looking to try something new. I came across this recipe here and was totally inspired. The fact that I had never made carnitas before was a bonus.
Carnitas ~ literally means “little meats,” typically pork, and braised slowly in a combination of juices and spices.
Like most recipes I come across, after looking through the list of ingredients, I pick out what I don’t care for and add in what I do like. This gets me in trouble sometimes with baking or with the first batch of caramels that I made over the weekend…but, that’s another post.
I shared a few ig’s along the way and promised to share the recipe if it turned out. It did. So much so that our family had it for dinner two nights in a row as the recipe made a healthy batch of food and, yes, the pork was even tastier the second day.

I didn’t take any formal picts, so I’ll just share my ig’s. They are not the sharpest, but you get the idea.  The recipe is at the bottom of the post.
As far as the herb/spice mix…add what you like. The same goes for the toppings, add your favorites. I’m on a fennel kick, so fennel landed on my carnitas, as did radishes. Whatever you like. ~Gina

photos © Gina Weathersby

Love in a Tortilla {Carnitas}
Recipe type: Main
  • 5 lb. pork butt (wrapped in twine)
  • 4 cups orange juice
  • 1 lime (juice)
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 med sized onion (roughly sliced)
  • 1 big handful of fresh cilantro (roughly chopped)
  • 4-5 fresh thyme branches
  • 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 T coffee grounds
  • 1 T toasted coriander seeds
  • 1 T Spanish paprika
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp celery salt
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 3 T kosher salt
  • 1 bottle of beer (your choice)
  • Toppings:
  • Thinly sliced onions, fennel, radishes, red/yellow bell peppers, scallions
  • Manchego cheese (grated)
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Homemade salsa
  • Homemade guacamole
  • Lime juice
  • Hot sauce (of choice)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Take the pork out of the fridge, pierce with a pairing knife in several places, salt and let rest for 15 minutes.
  3. In a dutch oven, large enough for your pork butt, sear all sides of the meat with some of the olive oil and set aside.
  4. In the same dutch oven, add the sliced onions and cook a few minutes till a little color is showing.
  5. In a bowl, combine the oj, lime juice, chopped garlic, and all the herbs and spices, slowly adding the remainder of the olive oil while whisking.
  6. Place the pork back into the dutch oven on top of the onions.
  7. Pour the marinade and beer on top of the pork until the pork is almost fully submerged.
  8. Put the lid on and place on the middle rack of the preheated oven.
  9. Cook for 4 hours.
  10. Baste half way through and add a splash of more beer, if needed.
  11. When finished cooking, just pull the meat with tongs and a fork.
  12. Place meat into a heat proof bowl and ladle in it's juices.
  13. Serve the pork with warm tortillas and your toppings of choice, top off with the fresh salsa, guacamole, cilantro and finish with a generous grating of cheese and, of course, your favorite hot sauce.



G. D. Vajra Wine Dinner at The Mercantile Library ~ Spines, Hart & Air

An extraordinary pop-up dinner collaboration combining the warm, old world atmosphere of Cincinnati’s Mercantile Library, an exceptional six course menu complete with wine pairings colorfully described by one with a most romantic Italian accent, and the gift of a sublime musical performance.
The hosts~Kevin Hart, Sebastien Hue, Gordon Hue, Chase Blowers, Jim Cornwell.

photographed by Gina Weathersby
words & poetry to accompany by Sebastien Hue and Ben Greenberg

A few images before linking below to the full evening spread.

To view entire story, just click the image below:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...