I had the opportunity to spend a weekend with Elena in Wilmington, NC to discuss blog writing, food photography, recipe development and goals for my practicum project. We started out by visiting the Columbus County Community Farmers Market and stopped at Dale’s Seafood in Lake Waccamaw on the drive back. To my delight, this was the start of a summer filled with visiting small, local restaurants and trying the local cuisine such as steamed baby shrimp and hush puppies.
Throughout the rest of the afternoon and weekend we discussed many topics as I picked Elena’s brain to absorb all the knowledge I could and learn a few steps she took in becoming a successful food blogger. Below is a list of list of important and interesting tidbits of what I learned over the weekend. Talk about a motivating 24 hours! I walked away with pages of notes and a feeling of excitement and eagerness to dive into the project.
Blogging: How to connect further with readers and gain audience?
- Stay consistent. Write quality posts on a regular basis.
- Google will start to verify posts as current
Photography: How to photograph food?
- Use angles and beauty from natural light and serving dish to form beauty
- Move body around subject
- Keep an eye out for dishes online/thrift stores/clearance
- Paint foam board preferred color for backdrop
- Using a phone’s camera (specifically iPhone 5) can work as well as a DSLR camera, mainly for convenience purposes
- Use Instagram for process shots
- Check out Photojojo for gifts & gear for photographers
Posting articles with pictures: How to size images and edit?
- Make photos the same width website theme/template
- Phone photo editing app: VSCO cam
Using Widgets and plug-ins in WordPress: Which to use?
- Plug-in to easily print recipes: Shareaholic
- Option for embedding Twitter feed
Using social media: what to post where?
- Post different content on different platforms
- Creating a voice within each will lead to more followers
Computer: Which to buy?
- MacBook Pro with Retina
Promoting blog: How to choose business cards?
Recipe development: How to start?
- Relate recipe back to personal life
- Research basic recipes, experiment to make your own
- Make recipe 1-2 times…or until satisfied
- Follow other bloggers and read cookbooks and modify at least 2 ingredients to make it your own, credit original author for inspiration
- Use Bloglovin’ to follow blogs
- Use Flipboard to collect and save recipes by URL
- Remember simplicity
- Stay seasonal