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September 15, 2008

It's a Girl...And a Girl!


When I found out that Kristen over at Dine and Dish had organized an adopt a food blogger event I couldn't wait to sign up! I missed the last round by a few days, but this time I signed up first thing and now it's time for me to introduce my two new blog "children"!

With out further ado I introduce you to...

Peckerwood Gravy Company


3 B's .... Baseball, Baking, & Books!

Kristen suggested we offer a few tips so I've compiled a few for both of you gals below. Also please feel free to e-mail me at diannesdishes at gmail dot com if you have any questions or are curious about anything!

I'm assuming since you both have jumped into the food blogging world that you are passionate about food, and that's good! Writing a blog about something you are passionate about is the first step. It also makes keeping up with what you are doing that much easier. If you're blogging about something you aren't all that into, then you will get bored with what you are doing and quick! Your blog should be a joy, not a chore! And don't be afraid to step away from a while if you need a break.

In my mind one of the most important aspects of a food blog is pictures, and not just pictures alone, good pictures. Granted every picture you take may not be fabulous, but you need to put a lot of thought into what you are shooting and how it looks, but don't worry this doesn't have to take a lot of time. Once you get used to it it will become second nature and you can take a fabulous photo in mere seconds! (And in fact the pictures on both of your sites look great, so you can skip down to the next thing if you're already a camera aficionado.) They say that people eat with their eyes and I think that is true to an extent (food has to actually taste good too) but something that doesn't look that appetizing isn't going to make someone want to try it! A good camera is essential and picking up a few photography tips is a must as well!

When I first started Dianne's Dishes in January of 2007 I used a Canon D20 SLR. Unfortunately in June of this year she decided to give up the ghost and went to the big camera heaven in the sky and I have to admit I was devastated, utterly and completely just flattened. I think it was safe to say I was way too attached to my camera, but when you use one as much as I do, they sort of become part of you. All of that to say that I highly recommend a digital SLR if you can swing one, but if not don't sweat that either (see below).

After my Canon died I started playing around with my old Sony Mavica CD400 and cursing it often! While it would take some fabulous pictures here and there, it just didn't have the range that I wanted. So as I wait for the camera fairy to come bless me with a brand new camera I've been using my Canon PowerShot SD750 Digitial Elph exclusively.

The key to good food pictures, whether you're using a SLR or a point and shoot, is good light and no flash! If you can take the food outside into natural light, that's fabulous! If it's rainy and dreary, turn on the lights and turn off the flash! If the pictures look a little blurry with no flash then get a tripod. (I got one at Target for $20 a couple of years ago and it attaches to every camera I have including my video camera!) Also think about how you are staging your food...What's around it? What's behind it? How it looks is key. Currently, when using my point and shoot, I turn the flash off, put it on the macro setting and also set it up for foliage...I don't know why but the foliage setting works fabulously for food pictures! (I'm still anxiously awaiting the camera fairy however!)

Another good thing to do is to get involved in the Food Blog Community if you haven't already. This can help bring in traffic to your site, all while you have a little fun! Keep in mind not everyone that stops by might stay, but you can pick up some new readers this way. Throw a contest, check out Daring Bakers, or Weekend Herb Blogging, or Operation Baking GALS (which I noticed one of you already participates in), or something along those lines. Also don't be afraid to go comment on food blogs that you like...And be sure to tell them why you like what you're commenting on too!

Also don't sweat the Internet Trolls as I like to call them. These are the people who stumble around the web and make hateful comments. Unfortunately no matter what type of blog you have they stumble upon you from time to time. The first instinct is to call them out and/or argue with them, but that's exactly what they want, in fact they thrive on the conflict, so just delete their comments and move on. I often wonder what kind of sad life these people lead getting their jollies by attacking people verbally on the web, but there isn't much you can do about them, other than ignore them and move on.

I'm rambling a bit, but there are some basics. Please feel free to e-mail me if there is something you're curious about and I'll be stopping by both of your blogs to see how things are going for you!

For my regular readers, I'll be adding both blogs to my blog roll later today, but for now take the links above and stop over at their blogs and say hello! I think you'll be glad that you did!

Posted by Dianne at September 15, 2008 12:42 PM

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What a great post! Lots of helpful information.
I think I would die if my camera died. I'm a bit attached to it too!

You got two really great adoptees. PWG lives near me and has been a frequent visitor on my mom's blog, which just melts my heart. Have fun, ladies!

Posted by: Kristen at September 15, 2008 1:47 PM


Thanks so much for the information, taking the time to post a warm welcome, and offer of help!

I did notice that you left me a comment on my blog and do apologize for not commenting back - YET! I have 3 very active children and their lives have been all consuming lately! AAAhhh!

I've been working backwards and reading some of your blog, again, I haven't been able to really dig in but will soon, promise!

Thanks,again, for taking me(us) under your wing!

~your dutiful daughter,

BTW, my mom is laughing her head off and thinking you don't know what you've gotten yourself into.

Posted by: Ingrid at September 15, 2008 2:26 PM

Ha, I just noticed that you have Twins (adoptees) I have Twins, too! You're in for it and I know!

Posted by: Ingrid at September 15, 2008 2:28 PM


Thank you for the lovely welcome and the great hints for photography. I was going to ask for help in that area. A good Blog Mother knows this about the chicks under her wing!

I will be reading more of your site and trying to get to know you better.

A big foodie hug and welcome to my new blog sister, Ingrid. Welcome aboard. I look forward to reading your blog as well.

Back to work, I mean play.....Nella

Posted by: Nella at September 15, 2008 6:26 PM

My FAQ section tells a little about this site and some insights into me, but feel free to ask if there is anything you're curious about! And also feel free to ask if there is something I can answer for you about blogging in general or something you are curious about with your own blogs.

I completely understand the busy with kids thing too. Alexis is five and I'm homeschooling her. I thought I was busy before, but now I feel like I'm on go all the time!

I'm pretty good about e-mail and answering comments, though lately sometimes things may have to sit over night, but I will get back to you I promise! ;o)

Welcome to both of you!

Posted by: Dianne at September 15, 2008 8:28 PM

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