Food Portrait: Winner Winner Chicken Dinner / by Jason Joseph

Winner Winner...Chicken Dinner

Food Photography is something that while I do not practice often....I enjoy immensely. The reason being, I enjoy food and photography immensely. Anytime you combine passions, you're bound to have worthwhile results. I like to play when I cook. I experiment. Much the same with photography. The rules once learned are best served when broken.. and the limits pushed. I think most great chefs would concur ( least from what I've gathered from watching The Food Network) If I can make an image that is lasting, timeless..and memorable ..then any and all efforts to make said image were not in vain. Now if I can do the same thing...and make an image of something in a fresh (pun intended) way, then I'm ahead of the game.

My goal in making this image was to celebrate the life of the chicken believe it or not. I think that to ignore the reality of a situation is the worst disservice you can bestow upon the moments of your life in which you have the opportunity to react, interact, affect the moment...situation or event. If you truly wish to have the most resonance...its best to embrace the reality, the good bad and the ugly of it.. embrace it and accept it. This is what was at play here....and I say play because play had an equal share in the thought process. I wanted to make the viewer aware of the death of the chicken..the frivolity in which we so nonchalantly handle the carcasses of these once feathered friends is nearly completely overlooked as we simply drool and consume.

Now I'm not pointing a finger and shaking the bone in it...I'm simply reminding us of the reality of something which we gloss over, and I'm doing so in a playful manner....paying homage to this species of animal that gives of itself to this planet in a way so much larger than many other species who have historically escaped such fate. In connecting it with something human I'm connecting the viewer in a manner in which they can more personally relate..yet by choosing the skull and crossbones pirate symbolism...I'm doing so in a playful way.

The choice to make the image dark.. grainy and unfocused is an attempt to instill some level of uncertainty, discomfort and even a looming sense that will haunt and potentially (hopefully) continue to remind the viewer in their continued relationship with food to remember its origin...and in turn hopefully appreciate it even more than it's perfectly seasoned palate pleasing offers.

Celebrating something by way of photographing it, to me...is best done when the photographer is in tune with the object and how that object is perceived by society, and when the photographer is honest with their audience, their subject...and their own vision. The result can only serve to do the subject justice...no matter what the subjects fate, otherwise.

As always I hope you enjoy the work. Please pass it along if so. Leave a comment, share your thoughts, and subscribe if  you wish.