The Stone notebook brand began in 2017 when a team of creatives, stationery manufacturers and restaurant industry professionals came together to create its flagship product – the Classic Stone – a notebook designed and built for chefs.
Following a Kickstarter launch that saw Stone become one of the most backed food projects in crowdfunding history, we have established ourselves as a recognised industry brand. Over 12,000 professionals worldwide using our stationery, including industry heavyweights Gordon Ramsay, Dan Barber, Thomas Keller and Rene Redzepi.
The range is continuously being developed, as Stone look to meet the needs of other professions within the industry, with new products including the Sommelier Stone.
All Stone stationery is made in collaboration with British custom notebook manufacturer Bookblock
1 L Cream
18 Egg Yolks (or 270g)
280g Sugar – Caramel (180c)
15g Maldon salt
350g strong white bread flour
110g icing sugar
140g butter, diced
½ beaten egg
50ml cold water
For the Pastry
1. Mix the flour and sugar in a bowl until evenly combined. Add the butter and run it in until the mix resembles breadcrumbs.
2. Mix the egg and water in a jug until combined, pour into the dry ingredients in the bowl and knead gently to a smooth dough. Wrap in clingfilm and leave to rest in the fridge for an hour before using.
For the Tart
1. Bring cream to the boil. In a separate bowl, combine egg yolks and 150g sugar.
2. Pour the cream over eggs and sugar. Place 1 Litre of this mixture into bowl and add the Maldon salt.
3. In a separate pan, over a low heat, bring 280g sugar to a dark caramel. Once a dark caramel forms, slowly incorporate this into the custard mix in the bowl, whisking continually. Combine this with any remaining custard and pass through a fine sieve.
4. Remove the skin and large bubbles off of the mixture and cover with cling film to contact. Leave standing for 5 minutes before removing the cling film, taking the small bubbles with it.
5. Pour into a blind baked tart case and bake at 130 C fan 2 until set.
6. Leave to stand for an hour before slicing and enjoy with pouring cream
Whether it’s a high-end fashion steal or a cut-price antique, everyone loves a bargain. Although you definitely get the very best bargains the earlier you roll up, luckily for late starters, in Wimbledon you don’t necessarily have to drag yourself out of bed at the crack of dawn to get your hands on a second-hand gem.
Wimbledon Stadium car boot sale
For two days a week the stadium grounds are filled with a vast array of vendors and hundreds of punters, all selling and buying a wide range of items from clothing to crockery to silverware and gold jewellery, so bring a big bag and expect to fill it. Hardcore bargain hunters can get early bird entry from 7am, but be warned the crowds can be ruthless and you need to act fast to get your hands on the real treasures.
Whilst I consider myself a food photographer schooled in documentary photography I do have a strong appreciation for studio still life photography, in which I sometimes dabble. I shot this series of images for custom notebook brand Book Block, with help from Art Director Emma Talbot and stylist Eloise James
Since becoming a food photographer I’ve developed what can only be described as an obsession with ceramics. Having a strong range of Earthenware and Stoneware to choose from can make styling a food shoot far more effortless, so building up my prop cupboard with the best ceramics has been an agenda of mine for a while. d
Sytch Farm Sample Ceramic Bowels
I could of course simply rent ceramics from the main London prop houses – China and Co, Backgrounds – like so many other food photographers do but that’s far less fun than sourcing them yourself.
But just like backdrops I’ve found them curiously difficult to source. Etsy in its early years was placed to be a market leader in this field, but it seems that greed and a disregard for product curation has seen it become a glorified Ebay. So with no real ceramic hubs to speak of (although I would love to be told I’m wrong about this) I’ve had to be a little bit creative with the way I source my ceramics.
One method I’ve found to be both fruitful and enjoyable is contacting talented ceramists directly through instagram. Sytch Farm is a studio I’ve been following for six months or so and I recently arranged a visit to the farm, where husband and wife team Gill and Jon make beautiful stoneware and hand carved chopping boards respectively. d
Gills Ceramic Studio and her helpers
Despite a long and rainy December drive from South London to their farm in Shrewsbury I couldn’t have been happier with my decision to pay the pair a visit. Welcomed into their studio/home with warmth that you usually have to drive four hours out of London to experience, I was provided with a tour of their farm and fed a delicious country lunch (served in some beautiful bowls).
Following this, I had the fun but difficult job of picking out some amazing food photography props including 50 or so bowls, plates and boards. All of which are now sitting happily in my photography studio D
My Top 3 Dishes of 2015 D
One of the many things I love about my job in food photography is getting to eat the food I shoot. There has only been one time were I haven’t been able to eat any dishes I shot and I’ll never forgive the chef for that! Despite being constantly reminded by the given chefs that the food I’ve shot is both cold and under seasoned (even two star michelin chefs can be apprehensive watching someone eat their food) I’ve still ate some incredible food this year. So I wanted to do my top 3 dishes of 2015 D
3. Roast Dinner by Tim Allen D
When Tim Allen talked me through this dish, which included a roast onion that was poached in an onion stock for 48 hours and 45 day aged Rib of Beef, I asked Tim Allen how he could make any mark up on this dish. His response – “I’m from Yorkshire, I can’t put out a shit roast, profit or no profit”
2. Pan-roasted Quail by Paul Welburn D
Paul Welburn is one of the best chefs I’ve worked with when it comes to platting, and his flavours and cooking match his visual skills. This Quail was sous vide before being roasted in a pan. The recipe for this dish can be found here
1. Scallop Mousse Ravioli D
When Adam Byatt produces dishes like this, with such incredible flavours and textures, and still hasn’t got a Michelin Star it makes me loose any faith in the Michelin Guide.
I recently produced a short film about British Chef Adam Byatt with Film maker Adrian Ardelean. The video was shot on a Sony A7s with the Atomos Ninja Assassin.
Having started his career at the legendary Claridges Hotel at the age of 16 Adam has worked at a wide range of Michelin Star. He now owns 3 restaurants – Trinity, Trinity Upstairs and Bistro Union. Despite being a regular on BBC television shows like Saturday Kitchen Adam prides himself at being a working chef and will be found most days in the kitchen. He also pride myself on being a mentor to young chefs starting in the business, both at his own restaurants and also through his work with the Academy of Culinary Arts.
Food Photography Studio Competition D
My photography studio – Clapham Studios – is currently running a free food photography competition. It’s free to enter and easy to submit. The winner, who will the persons whose image gets the most amount of votes will win a free days studio rental, worth £250. D
Our studio has been designed specifically for food photography so if you are a food photographer, or are interested in food photography you should enter and share the image you submit amongst your friends and peers. To enter click here
Lucky Peach, a collaboration between Momofuku’s David Chang, food writer Peter Meehan, and the McSweeney team, is one of the most exciting publications in food journalism today. Free from the constraints of mainstream media it leverages its unique position to buck the trends of current journalism and embrace long-form writing and acid-trip design. Handing the proverbial pen to its chefs, allowing them to write freely about food and trends.
Stefan Johnson Food Photography Restaurant Photography
Stefan Johnson Food Photography Restaurant Photography
The magazine is also able to pull in luminaries of traditional media, including Ruth Reichl amd Anthony Bourdain, giving them a unique platform. The magazine is quirky, smart, and impulsively readable. Issues focus on a singular theme—from Chinatown to The Apocalypse—and showcases art, photos, essays, and insanely advanced recipes from some very recognizable names.
Stefan Johnson Food Photography Restaurant Photography
Understanding how light effects you image is perhaps the most important things to know in food photography. Below are three food photography tutorial videos I found that aspiring food photographers may find helpful.
Robb Grimm on Natural Light
American food, drink and product photographer Robb Grimm provides a 10 minute lesson on daylight, using shadows and diffusing light for food photography.
William Brinson and Constant Light
William Brinson, another American food photographer, discusses using constant light in his food photographer as he reveals the ideas, methods and process for his pursuit of alluring, emotional light and tasty food.
William and his partner Susan are a photography team based in New York. Since high School, they have worked together forming one of the best design-photography duo. After moving to NYC and each pursuing individual careers, a natural evolution occurred and they began collaborating and creating as a team. Now, both behind the camera, they photography for clients like Chipotle, New York Times Magazine and Real Simple.
Andrew Scrivani on the three elements of photography lighting
Andrew Scrivani, a food photographer who has shot over 10 cookbooks, offers instructional talk about using all three light forms – flash, constant and natural light – to attaiin the perfect food photography images both on location and in the studio
As a gift for one of my favourite clients I got a load of Custom Notebooks made by London startup www.original.bookblock.com. Effectively becoming the blurb.com of notebooks this is the first time a fully customisable quality journal has been made available for the individual photographers, illustrators or designers d
All printed on vegan leather, which as well as being more ethical actually feels nicer then a soft or hard leather, I got some of my favourite shots I’ve taken for Great British Chefs printed full bleed. I also got a variety of hard colours with the company logo foiled onto the front which I thought looked pretty nice! d
As you can see in my portfolio I like to keep shots within a series/context, allowing me to curate my work. The only disadvantage is single images being left behind. Quite often these single shots are made up of chef portraits I take whilst in kitchens.
Whist food is my biggest passion my love for making images originated in documentary and portrait photography work. Here are a selection of shots I took in both my studio and on location.