One of the things that I adore about writing a food blog is that I have found so many others who share this love with me. Looking around the room on Saturday at the Food Blog Forum event in Orlando, I saw a wide variety of people, with lots of different backgrounds and talents, but all with that same passion for food – cooking it, eating it, writing about it, photographing it. We were all there because of our strong desire to learn, to improve our skills, to broaden our talents, and to make connections.
It’s making those connections that I love the most.
Jaden of Steamy Kitchen and Dawn of Wicked Good Dinner spoke about their experiences starting and growing their blogs. Hearing about how they turned their passion for food into a career, a job they love – and don’t think of as a job – was inspiring. Lindsay of Love & Olive Oil and Purr Design, though nervous about speaking to the group, did a wonderful job explaining basics of blog design. I left her session with my mind filled with ideas – and also very thankful that there are knowledgeable people like her out there to help the rest of us out. Julie of The Little Kitchen is a pure ball of energy. It is because of her persistence and tenacity that the Food Blog Forum Orlando even happened in the first place.
I was lucky to become friends with Helene Dujardin of Tartelette in January, and I was so excited to hear her session on food styling and photography. I was even more thrilled to be able to participate in a three hour, hands-on, food styling workshop on Sunday. Helene’s enthusiasm and love for what she does comes through loud and clear. She is self-taught, and I found that fact very encouraging. It gives me hope for my own photography skills one day. Helene has a book coming out next month, and I can hardly wait to get my hands on a copy.
I was finally able to meet Aggie, a kindred spirit, and I am already counting down the days until college football season. I plan to drag her up to Gainesville to hang out for a Gator game. Florida has so many talented food writers, cooks, and photographers – Binky, Denise, Michelle, Renee, Lael, and so many others. And I met so many other amazing people this weekend, not only from Florida, but also from as far away as New York City and Virginia.
We gathered at the Food Blog Forum Orlando to learn from each other, to teach each other, to share information and advice, and to support one another in this journey. We gathered to make connections with others who share our love of food and creating.
And I left feeling inspired.