I love meeting new people, and as a photographer you get to stick your nose into all kinds of interesting worlds. Without a doubt, one of the most fascinating places is a professional kitchen where some of the most interesting, driven, talented, sleep deprived, hard working and often hard partying group of people, give off an almost tangible energy that it is impossible not to warm too. That’s not to say they aren’t all a little terrifying in their own way, but once you have been accepted into their kitchens and they realise you are obsessed by food as well as photography then all is generally well.
The rules are simple: taste things that are offered, from pigs cheeks to pigs trotters, but never ask for food. Ask questions but not too many, and not when they are in full flight. Don’t comment on the heat … it’s a kitchen…. Don’t say you are tired – they have probably been there since dawn. Keep out of the way, but make the shots look like you are in the middle of the action. Then imagine how you would feel if they came to your studio and started cooking in the corner… and marvel at their tolerance.