You Got Served: Irvin Lin, Eat The Love
You Got Served Box 003 has taken us across the spectrum of the style -sphere with completely different techniques and personalities this month! As we complete this particular box's journey, we take one last stop in San Francisco and visit one classically styled (and talented) food photographer as well as a food-blog friend we've known for years, Irvin Lin of Eat The Love.
Not only is this dapper chap an award winning baker...he also knows his way around design, making things look darn good (and perfectly kerned) in the world of food advertising. We love a multi-tasker, not to mention a hard worker - we might as well tack on a VERY ambitious cookbook due out next year to the growing list of to-dos on this guy's growing agenda.
Get those ovens pre-heated....and your flour ready to mix.
You're getting served...by Irvin Lin.[separator type="double"] The Rules: ~Subject must choose and work with at least two items and one textile from the mystery box ~Location and surface area up to the discretion of the subject ~One additional textile, prop, and food/botanicals can be selected from the subject’s personal collection [separator type="double"]
Do you have a routine or game plan when it comes to styling with props for your photos?
Nope. No routine or game plan. I tend to be a minimalist when it comes to props and to my food photography, but more because I’m a bit lazy and pulling out all my props for a photo seems more bother than it’s worth.
That said, I DO try to push myself a little bit every now and then to take photos that are different and out of my comfort zone. Sometimes that means my photos are more prop heavy or more styled, while sometimes that means they are really minimal and stark. It really depends on the mood I’m in or what I’m trying to do, as well as what the food is. Mostly though it’s all about the food and how to highlight it in the best way possible.
Above image: Irvin Lin, Eat The Love
What's your Serving Style? Brand new/on trend, unique vintage originals, particular colors?
I don’t like to stick to trends and hence, I have a mix of brand new, vintage, old school and super modern and contemporary. I love it all and again it really depends on the mood of the shoot, what the story that I am telling with the photo and what sort of food it is. I’m definitely drawn to more masculine colors and shades (earth tones, dark brown, wood and ore organic colors like burnt orange and deep shades of blues and greens). But sometimes you have to mix it up and use something outside your comfort zone to push yourself. Never get bored tends to be my motto!
Do you have a favorite piece in your collection? What's the story behind it?
I don’t have a favorite piece out of my collection but there are some pieces I have that I just haven’t figure out what to do with but love or I’ve used once and haven’t found a way to use again. My weird server where the handle is made out of an animal hoof. My cake server that looks like it’s from an oddball vintage nautical set. My aqua green California ceramic vintage cake stand. I kind of love them all but have only been able to use them once (or in the case of the animal hoof set, haven’t used yet).
I took a road trip across the country last summer with my partner AJ. He’s a cyclist and he would go off on 8 hour cycling rides while we crossed the country, where I would drop him off at one place and pick him up 100 miles away. In the meanwhile, I had a lot of time to go antique and vintage prop shopping. The cake servers I found in Atlanta as a giant antique fair. The vintage cake stand I found somewhere in Missouri. I ended up having to ship a bunch of stuff back midway through our trip because we ran out of room in our car!
If you could get a hold of any item for your kitchen or tabletop, what do you currently have your eye on?
I would REALLY love a dishwasher. Seriously. I’m working on a baking cookbook right now and those dishes PILE. UP. But I don’t have room in my apartment kitchen for one. I was actually once offered one by a brand (who shall remain nameless but I love you brand who offered me a free dishwasher!) but I sadly had to turn it down. It was heartbreaking.
Otherwise, I REALLY try not to covet prop pieces too much nor do I visit places like eBay, etsy or replacements.com because if I did, I’d do serious damage to my credit card. That said, if you must know, I secretly lust after anything and everything Elephant Ceramics does, especially her platters and plates. But sadly I cannot afford anything by her and she sells out of everything pretty much automatically.
If you could express your personal style in 3 emjois, what would they be?
Show up well dressed. Stay Positive. But if those two don’t work, sleep because tomorrow is another day.
Above image: Irvin Lin, Eat The Love
Dark, moody...this set up has us easily saying goodbye to summer and welcoming in warm cakes, golden light and an autumn inspired style rotation with some rustic pieces and natural textiles. Can we admit that we secretly wanted BOTH of those outrageous serving pieces to be part of this project...I mean, wow statement makers!
Thank you for sending us into the new season Mr. Lin...oh and for letting us taste that savory plum upside down cake! It was delish...but you guys are going to have to wait for his cookbook coming out in 2016 for the recipe....worth it, promise.
Want more from Box 003?! Check out Nathan Hazard's Tiki Touch & Farley Elliot's stunning invention of "The Donut Selfie".
And as always, feel free to catch up on the full on-going "You Got Served" series in our archives! Lots of surprised guests to be seen!