Photography School and a Sandwich


I thought it was high time that I finally posted what I’ve been up too. My last two posts have been for Secret Recipe Club, just because I’m a commitment gal, and I love the club and sadly nothing else.

Rocky Mountain School of Photography has been amazing!  The more I learn the more I learn that I have more to learn. After the first part of school, I took a break and went out to Washington State to visit family and friends; a trip long overdue.


I have loads of photos from that trip, but I’ll share them in a different post since this post promises to be photo heavy already.

Returning from my mini vaca, I spent the next three weeks taking professional studies.  Pro studies are one week immersion courses in specialized areas.  My first week was Stock photography with Rob Sylvan, he has this blog for Lightroom and he wrote this book on stock, which we all got a copy of.  An amazing course that made me realize there is a lot more to stock than just snapping a photo.

We went to a local community farm one day (that is where I got my carrot shots from for my last post).



We did a little studio time…this shot was so much fun, and my classmate Jen was a great model.  You all know that I love all things lemony….


We did another shoot at an elementary school, but the parents did not want the photos on the web, so no sharing Sad smile

The next week I took Modern Studio with Heather Ann Thomas of  Beall and Thomas photography.  She was an incredible instructor, her photos are in magazines and she has shot cookbooks for major chain restaurants and Blackberry Farm in Tennessee.

One of our shoots was at The Break café in Missoula.  I got behind the scenes with Amanda their baker.  You could tell that she looooves what she does.

I had a little fun with their neon sign also.




We also had some studio time….portraits.  Ugh, shooting kids and people, not what I like doing but I think the photos came out okay.




We also did some bride/couple photography on location.




My very last week was the whole reason why I started this school, Food and Product with Joe Lavine.  Don’t know who he is?  Next time you see a Hamburger Helper box, or Minute Rice, Wanchai Ferry, Nature Vally, Pillsbury, Macaroni Grill, Swift Premium, “Beef” ads, and so on….he’s the man.  He not only does commercial work but has some beautiful art photography also.

On one of our shoots we went on location to the Tamarack Brewery and Pub.  Again, one of my very accommodating classmates, this time, Charlie was my model.


We did a product shot of a watch.  McGyver needed a new one, so I did the whole outdoorsy thing. Can you believe this was shot in a studio?  This shot was my ah-ha moment for how to use a light meter to get results that you want.


One of our assignments was to shoot a drink shot.  I choose a Martini made from 44 North Vodka out of Boise, Idaho. For me this was an amazing shot!  I can’t believe that I conceptualized this and with a little teacher help was able to pull my vision off.  In the end, I think it is simply a cool shot!


I also did a pasta shot, which I had the fortune of working with another student who is a chef and learned food styling from Denise Vivaldi.  I’m saving that for another post because I have a recipe to go with.

Back to the sandwich, the sandwich was shot on the first day of class, I used Joe’s demonstration light set up….nice and safe.  I was pleased with the quality of lighting, I just never realized that studio lights can do some amazing things.   I missed the memo that Joe was supplying all the sandwich makings and props and I brought my own…per usual, I just had to do it my own way.


On a side note…I’m having fits with my ziplist recipe plug-in, it’ll only load the recipe at the top of the page, I don’t want it there….I gave up last night and now I’ve given up this morning and am posting this the old fashioned way….


Kickass Cucumber Sandwich
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  1. 2 slices good bread such as Dave’s Killer Bread
  2. 2 ounces whipped cream cheese with chives
  3. thinly sliced cucumbers
  4. thinly sliced red onions
  5. alfalfa sprouts
  1. Spread the cream cheese on once slice of bread,pile high with cucumbers, onions and alfalfa sprouts.  Top with second slice of bread.
  2. Pour yourself a refreshing drink, cop a squat and enjoy a kickass cuke sammie.
The Kitchen Witch
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12 Responses to Photography School and a Sandwich

  1. kita September 24, 2012 at 6:14 am #

    Your photos look great! Even the portraits. Any tips on finding a photography school, or choosing one? I have been considering taking some courses myself.

    • Giggles September 24, 2012 at 5:47 pm #


      Thanks. I can say that photography school has been worth every penny, but I had a lot to learn! As far as finding a photography school I started out practical with location and cost/financial aid accepted or available (probably not what experts would recommend), then I looked at their chops. For example, the most important thing to me was if they offered food photography, I also looked out for what their “focus” (couldn’t resist the pun). For example, this school is career based, I’m being taught how to create beautiful images and what I need to know as a small business owner. Lastly I checked up on the staff, did they hire experts in their field. I didn’t care if the instructors had degrees, I wanted photographers with experience teaching. Lastly was the length of the program, this program in total is 5 months but is broken down in 3 parts so I didn’t have to do it all at once if I chose that path. Obviously I decided to go balls to the walls and do the whole thing. I hope that helps…

      • kita October 10, 2012 at 8:46 pm #

        Im really thinking more and more about finding financing and going back to school. Im looking forward to reading your next post too – just saw it in my reader. My computers dying right now but I will read it and comment tomorrow!

  2. Lea Ann September 24, 2012 at 6:38 am #

    I’m so glad you’re taking the time to share your photography school photos. I personally enjoy reading all about it. I’m with you, food and animals please. I’m not a fan of taking staged photos of people. I think some of the best food photography shots are of sandwiches. Don’t know why. And your’s is one of the best I’ve seen. Plus it made me instantly hungry. 🙂

    • Giggles September 24, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

      Lea Ann, Glad your enjoying my photo barrage, it’s hard to not share. Food and animals are so much easier to deal with than people 😉 That sandwich is as good as it looks, even my carnivirous hubby loved it.

  3. Helene Dsouza I Masala Herb September 24, 2012 at 8:35 am #

    Hi Rhonda!

    My favorite shots r the one with your friend and the lemons. The vodka looks classy too, like a poster add, but I think so my favorit is the sandwich just because of the colores, the lightning and the lil alfalfa sprouts.

    That with the ziplist plug in sucks, I wish I knew how to solve that problem and help you. =I

    • Giggles September 24, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

      Helene, that lemon shot was fun to shoot. I don’t normally like doing “posed” photos but this one was so funny that we all had a great time! I’m gald you thought the vodka looked like a poster ad, that was goal…internet high five! I’m sure I’ll get my plug in figured out when I have the time.

  4. CJ at Food Stories September 24, 2012 at 9:18 am #

    Gorgeous photographs … Love all the pics and so good to hear from you 🙂

    • Giggles September 24, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

      Thanks so much, I miss my regular blogging!

  5. Karen September 24, 2012 at 11:19 am #

    You’ve been busy! Glad you got some time to visit with family. I always thought your pics were great, but now… fabulous! Sounds like you’re having a blast.

    • Giggles September 24, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

      Karen, thanks for sticking around even when I’ve been too busy. And that flattery will get you everywhere.

  6. Debra September 25, 2012 at 6:54 pm #

    Finally, some of your fabtastic photos. Thanks for sharing. I love the bicycle bride and the pouty faced tot. But, that being said, all your shots are fantastic. You have a lot of talent. And of course, love your kick ass sandwich!