I had the privilege of photographing the Napa Valley cooperage Nadalié USA along with its Master Cooper Alain Poisson recently for Life & Thyme. Nadalié has been making handcrafted barrels in the traditional French style for over 30 years, making it the oldest in America. I documented the process from the aged wood being cut down into staves, to the toasting room where each barrel is watched over by an experienced cooper. Below are a few select images, and you can read the full story here.
Over the past couple months in between jobs, I along with another photographer have been working on a short documentary about a sheep rancher in Sonoma County. I've been enjoying the process of video and the creative challenges it brings. Our hope is that we can produce more of these short videos, with the overarching theme being Our Edible Landscape, a deeper look into the food that we eat.
Below is a collection of images from the production as well as the video.
It's the middle of winter and bitter cold—but that doesn't stop these Chesapeake Bay watermen from dredging for oysters in Deal Island, MD. The tedious and repetitious process of dredging requires hard work, a battling of the elements, and high physical demands over the course of a thirteen hour day. I was lucky enough to venture out with the locals on a Skipjack—a type of boat rarely used for oystering anymore. This vessel is one of the thirty-six remaining traditional Chesapeake Bay Skipjacks and member of the last commercial sailing fleet in the United States.
See this story and others here.
I recently documented fishermen who were fishing for dungeness crab in the San Francisco Bay. The experience gave me a new perspective on what actually goes on behind the curtain of our food culture. I couldn't help but continue this ongoing exploration (obsession). I contacted a friend who is a chef in Southern California, and asked if I could shadow him for his eleven hour day. In the series of Fishing for Local Fare, I talked about the hands that touch our food—this is an extension of that thought. Exploring a more personal look into the life of a chef at a fine dining establishment.
View the story here.
It’s amazing to me how much our lives revolve around food. From holidays and vacations to parties and conversation, food has a way of captivating us. It’s unmistakably a part of our culture. While the trends may change from week to week, there remains a constant — the people who make our meals possible. They are the hands that touch our food, and in doing so, touch our lives. This collection of photographs tells that story. John Mellor and company headed out twenty miles off the coast of San Francisco, hoping for a good catch. They dedicated countless hours to the simple notion of bringing fresh, local fare to Bay Area tables.
See the story here.