Saturday, March 14, 2009

Welcome to My Culinary Art Studio

If you are new to my blog, WELCOME! If you are a returning friend, WELCOME BACK! In the past few months or more I have been back and forth and in and out of working on this blog. At times it was just too busy. I had too much to do and too much to take care of. This is the main reason for my absences.

Then a few weeks ago, my one year anniversary in which I began blogging was to arrive. I wanted to do something special. Have a great meal or dish or post or giveaway. The day began to approach rapidly and I had no great ideas. No fabulously perfect dishes to share. I wasn't altogether that busy. I had many posts and photos in the vaults and in my head but I was out of steam. I was just not motivated. I did not feel happy. There are many things to worry about these days with the recession, loss of jobs, money problems, mortgage issues... Many of us are having a hard time. The weight of all these things was upon me and I just could not write, could not concentrate. But as will all things we pick ourselves up, dust off and begin again refreshed.

My goals are many. My hopes are high. My dreams are vast. With this blog, I truly want to make improvements. I want to work harder at providing new recipes. I want to post more often. I want to work harder at my writing skills and food photography. I want to visit other blogs more often. My hope is to provide an enjoyable site with useful tips, recipes, hints and information. One that is fun to read and view as well as something worth continually returning to. I want a more professional outlook yet will still write from my heart and personal feelings. My children will undoubtably pop into the mix from time to time. How can they not? They are the biggest part of my life.

For all of you that are regular visitors, you will note the new masthead. I had an idea for this header nearly a year ago but needed the time to set up the "artist's table". After a couple hundred shots and different configurations from simple to complex, I then went to the computer and played and created in order to come up with the new one above. Within this post you can see my two runner-ups. In the sidebar you can see some of my favorite close up shots from the day. The main idea was to play with the "art" concept along with the "aioli". I wanted it to look like an artist's work table. The work, the art will be the posts. The food. The writing. The creating of recipes and meals and parties. Cooking is an art. To really be good, one should be able to use creativity. Plating of food can be wonderfully gorgeous and have amazing design qualities. So within this site I hope to realize my art as a designer, a chef and a writer.

Thank you to everyone who comes to read and respond to Art and Aioli, a blog about art, food and the art of food. Cheers to you all and here's to new beginnings and hope for more flavorful days to come.

18 comments:

Kim in the Kitchen said...

Welcome back Nicole! I've been wondering where you've been! I love the new masthead too. Beautiful!

Nicole said...

Thanks Kim! I hope to post more. I really really do!

Maryann said...

I love your new header! Happy Blogiversary dear!

Nicole said...

Thank you Maryann!!! It was a lot of work to make the header. Actually spent so much more time than I thought with all the arranging and photographing.

Sherry said...

Beautiful. You've inspired and continue to inspire. I always enjoy visiting.

melissa said...

It's great to hear from you and I adore your new header! I love your approach and your attitude. Look forward to what you have in store. :)

Erin said...

The header and other pictures along the side of your blog look great! That must have been a fun project, and you did a great job making it look so professional!

I hear you on the lack of motivation for the last few months of blogging. My husband lost his job right when I got my new (really demanding) job... so between lack of money and time cooking was pushed back a little. Thankfully Joe has a job again, and I'm quitting my job in May to go back to school, so spirits are much higher around here now! And after a whopping 2 posts in February, I'm determined to post more this month :)

Oh, and keep your kids in the posts! They are so cute and I love reading about what it's like cooking with/for children. It's one of the things that makes your blog unique. Good luck and have fun!

Peter M said...

Great looking new header...very creative but i knew that about you!

Psst, could you give me a little spruce-up for mine?

Nicole said...

Sherry- Thank YOU for continuing to visit. You are an inspiration yourself.

Melissa- Thank you! I am sure that the recipes will not differ greatly but I hope to be more diligent and professional to a degree.

Erin- Thanks! And no doubt my kids will come into play quite a bit. They are always there and sticking their fingers and noses into the food and the photos!

Peter- Thank you! I would be happy to help you with your header. ACTUALLY I was thinking I could offer that service to bloggers. I cannot do programming or HTML but I can do a lot with photos and illustrations. May be a good way to come up with a little extra cash?

Proud Italian Cook said...

Nicole, You're so creative, I love your new header! Happy Blogoversary to you too. I can barely listen to the news anymore, it's always bad. Hope this country turns around soon, and hope things get better for you!
Hugs, Marie

Nicole said...

Thank you Marie! I wanted to do something special but just dropped the ball on it. Maybe I will do a belated one.

Robin Sue said...

Beautiful new site and header. I think it says everything about your site and ties the art in so nicely. I like the soft cream background too. I just wish I can get my pictures big like yours! Mine stay small for some reason.

myfrenchkitchen said...

Your new header looks great! good luck on all your goals, you are already achieving them, continue to enjoy it!
ronell

Nicole said...

Robin Sue- Thanks. Here is what I do to get larger pictures. After I import the photos when I am in the "create a new post" mode, I drag the corner to make it larger. Hope that helps.

Ronell- Thank you so much. I really appreciate the compliment.

Through My Kitchen Window said...

Hello Nicole. I am new to the world of blogging. I love the name of your blog, I make a great aioli by the way so that probably had something to do with it.
congrats on your anniversary. It sounds like you are gearing up for some serious blogging. I look forward to checking in again.

Nicole said...

Kitchen Window- I am so happy you came across my blog. Welcome! And welcome to the blogging world! It is a fun and interesting place. I will check out your space. Best of luck.

Lori Lynn said...

Love your artist's table concept.
Congrats again.
The blog style looks artsy and hip!
LL

Nicole said...

Lori Lynn- Thank you! What a compliment.