I’ve been designing professionally for four years now. Over those four years, I started my own business, studied the latest trends, read book after book about design and freelancing, worked until the wee hours of the morning, and fretted over pixels. Design was my life.
Until one phone call changed everything. My mom is a bit of a romantic and for my dad’s birthday last year, she made cookies with writing on top saying “I love you more than…” and named each of their kids and what they love most. “I love you more than Brandon loves singing” and “I love you more than Anna loves Taylor Swift” and so on. When she told me what mine said, I was a bit confused. “I love you more than Bethany likes food.” Food? Really? Not design, the thing my life revolves around?
I found myself feeling a bit disappointed, like I’d failed in making it clear that design was my lifes passion. Was it not enough that I was spending every waking moment on design? What more did I have to prove that I loved it? Was I not good enough at design for people to take my career seriously? Did I not love design it as much as I thought I did? What was I even doing with my life? Queue overdramatic existential crisis.
But as it turns out, my mom was right (as usual… sorry, Mom). Within a few months, I was knee deep in plans for The Collaboreat, taking a notebook out to lunch with me and filling it with ideas and lists about food and eateries. When Josh and I sat down to create a budget when money got tight, I nixed my “shopping allowance” in favor of saving for excursions to restaurants. I had to hold myself back from posting all the pictures of food I was taking, not wanting to alienate the followers there to see my design work.
In time, it was clear that I do indeed love food more than design. That isn’t to say that I love design less than I once did, I’ve just found that working with food (in any capacity) made me much happier and every day spent eating, photographing, or writing about food was fantastic. Heck, even designing food related materials brought me much more joy than the average design project.
In fact, food drove my design work. I delved into illustration, both by hand and on screen, using food as my muse for mastering shades and perspective. I dreamed up restaurants I would love to open, designing the menu and logo. It seemed that working food into my creative work only made me shine more.
And so with much deliberation and brainstorming and planning and eating, I’ve decided to combine these two loves on a fresh new blog, abandoning strict labels for the freedom to pursue whatever brings me the most happiness. Right now, ideas and plans swim around in my brain and I’m eager to get them out into this new space of mine.
While it might seem like a strange concoction, I’m excited to mix up my creative work with food and see what becomes of it. I hope you’ll stick around and savor it all with me. After all, food tastes much better with friends!