The SAVEUR Blog Awards are here, and from a pool of tens of thousands of reader nominations we've selected 78 finalists in 13 categories. Now it's your turn to vote for a winner. Cast your ballot here early and often; you can vote as many times as you like by August 31st. Today: meet the finalists for our Best Photography award.
It's easy to take a photo of food. It's not easy to take a spectacular photo of everything you eat and cook. These six bloggers consistently take stunning photographs of what they're baking, catching, and growing, and they inspire us to try new recipes as often as we can.
The Blog: This blog started out as a documentation of Betty Liu's mother's Shanghai cooking, but eventually became a celebration of the mingling of eastern and western flavors, of experimentation and novelties. She fell in love with the process of making food. By trying, failing, and trying again various techniques and documenting the process, Liu began to cherish the beauty of the in-between moments, so we can all remember the human involvement that goes into making food. Her blog documents these microstories.
The Blogger: Betty Liu photographs weddings on the weekend and food during the week, and she teaches photography workshops here and there. She grew up in California but is now based in Boston, with a stop in the Midwest along the way. She lives in a tiny apartment with a tiny kitchen, with a large dog and her dear husband, who is the best recipe-taster and travel partner. She loves goat cheese and she's obsessed with putting scallions on basically everything.
The Blog: Up Close & Tasty is a blog dedicated to "all things food photography," including recipes, restaurants, and travel. What started out as a weekend hobby has turned into a career-changing passion for blogger Regan Baroni. For her blog, she wears all the hats from cooking, styling, props and photography and approaches each shoot with an authentic, rustic and story-telling style. She shares approachable recipes to inspire the home cook and focuses on beautiful photography to inspire a connection between food and art.
The Blogger: Food and photography took Regan Baroni by surprise in her life. She has always had an appreciation for good food, but she started seeing it differently when she learned to cook. After her family surprised her with her first DSLR, she taught herself the art of food photography and ended up leaving her career in advertising to pursue it full-time. She currently lives in Chicago with her husband, Mike, and their chubby tabby cat, Ollie.
The Blog: Historias del Ciervo ("Deer Stories" in English) features a love for nature and the joy of a fairytale universe. Blogger Julián Ángel started the blog to show himself in the most honest way possible by sharing both his successes and failures with his followers. He believes that photography is a way to show beauty in even the most humble space by using color, light, and passion.
The Blogger: Julián Ángel is a 30-year-old web designer and amateur home baker from Colombia. He found love for cooking three years ago when he moved into a new city. After a batch of failed muffins, he pushed himself to bake almost on a daily basis. For his 29th birthday he received a DSLR camera and started shooting immediately, exploring a whole new face of design through styling and photography. Now baking and photography are big passions in his life as he explores his childhood memories and enjoys a simple way of living.
The Blog: Hortus was born from a need for healing blogger Valentina Solfrini's body and soul. Plant-based cooking helped her find her balance, while food photography helped me find the beauty within each ray of light that hit every surface I set my food on. My blog, born in New York after a forced leave for Italy, served as a bridge to connect the two cultures I feel most attached to—a bridge that is getting me ever closer to what I can call home.
The Blogger: Valentina Solfrini is an Italy and New York-based photographer with a background in painting and illustration. Her passion for developing, styling, and shooting vegetarian and vegan recipes was born from her eagerness to explore painting her favorite food with light and her newfound love for whole foods. Her own cookbook, about Mediterranean vegetarian cooking, is scheduled to be released fall 2017 by Penguin Random House. She is currently on a quest to learn to love cilantro.
The Blog: In the Three Little Halves world, a recipe is not just a recipe, it has a story to tell a universe of stories. A recipe is an account of the meals we've eaten and places we've been to, the laughs we laughed and the tears we cried. Our recipes are the keepers of our friendships and our love affairs, the old ones and the ones we are about to make. Blogger Aleksandra Mojsilović cooks, writes, and photographs hoping that every post will take the readers on a new journey: to faraway lands and to the remotest places in their hearts and imagination.
The Blogger: Aleksandra Mojsilović (aka QueenSashy) is a scientist by day, and a cook, photographer and doodler by night. When she is not writing code and scientific papers, she blogs about food, life and everything in between on her blog, Three Little Halves. Three Little Halves was nominated for the James Beard Awards, the finalist of Saveur Best Food Blog Awards for Best Original Recipes, and the winner of the IACP Awards for the Best Narrative Culinary Blog. Aleksandra lives in New York City with her other two halves, Miss Pain and Dr. V.
The Blog: Hello My Dumpling is blogger Jenny Huang's ramblings on the food that she loves to eat, usually healthy and always bold. The blog was started when she was in a transitional period of her life last year and has been an amazing place where she can combine her love of photography and food. Her recipes draw inspiration from her eclectic background and the wonderful food cultures of the world. She is always looking to explore the stories behind dishes and the deep meaning that food memories have for people. Cooking and eating should always be a scrumptious and beautiful adventure.
The Blogger: As a Sichuan girl growing up in the amazing food culture of New Orleans, you could say food is in Jenny Huang's blood. Her love of photography really developed in college and grew as she started to point her camera towards the food that she loved. She is currently a freelance food photographer, stylist, and recipe developer based in Brooklyn. She is partial to moody shadows, rich colors, and exploring the raw beauty of nature's bounty.