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I'm a Cairns, far north Queensland, Australia professional photographer specialising in travel, editorial and environmental portraiture.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Photographing food

I bet when you read the title of the post you thought this was gonna be a post about how to light your five-star meal so it looked delicious!

Well sorry to disappoint you. Monkey anyone? One of the things I love the most about travel is the food. As a travel photographer/writer you often get sent on famils where you get wined and dined in fancy restaurants.

But at the other end of the scale you get days like this. This is in the Democratic Republic of Congo, formerly known as Zaire. A huge country in the centre of Africa, the country is pretty much a mess. The Trans-African Highway (on which this gentleman is standing) runs across the middle of the country.

When it rains they get holes in the road so big they literally swallow a truck! It really is the Heart of Darkness. One evening after a full day of digging our truck out of bog hole after bog hole ( I think we managed to cover about 4 kilometres that day!) we were exhausted. We asked some locals to hunt us something for dinner and this is what they came back with.

Just as you need to keep an open mind when experiencing new cultures, you have to keep an open stomach when it comes to dinner time. I've eaten everything from chicken feet to grasshoppers, from salty sea urchin to crocodile. Some of it has agreed with me, some of it definitely not but I'll give anything a go - once!

The hardest thing I always find about photographing your own food is remembering to do so. I always seem to get to the end of a meal and think, damn I should have photographed that. In this case I did. Not exactly fine dining in the Ritz but all a part of the travel experience nonetheless.

I have to admit, today's post didn't have a hell of a lot to do with photography but it gave me a great excuse to put my monkey handbag photo up! :)

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