Can you share a bit about your journey in food and photography?
I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in Architecture and Industrial Engineering. My first job out of school was working as a set decorating assistant for TV shows — and the first show I worked on was a food show. I saw all of the food stylists building what I translated as teeny tiny architecture, and I decided that that’s what I wanted to be when I grew up.
Tell us about the connection between wellness and creativity, for you…
I have always been an athlete. My hope is that my creative journey inspires people to eat more healthfully and colorfully. The more natural colors of fruit and vegetables you put in your body, the better.
Where do you seek and find inspiration?
I get most of my inspiration from the farmers' market and nature. I'm also really into fashion and music. I read a lot and am inspired by the people I surround myself with from other industries.
Talk about the importance of highlighting the farmer…
The farmers make all of the magic happen. I had someone recently tell me when went to a farm to table restaurant. And I said, All produce comes from farmers. I like to stress the local farmer, to have trust in who is growing your food. They also love to educate. I love listening to farmers speak to the customers about the different varieties of avocados, for example, and the different uses for each type.
Who are some of your heroes in the space?
Sam Kass, the White House Chef & Senior Policy Advisor on Nutrition from the Obama era is a true hero of mine. He created the White House kitchen garden and worked with Michelle Obama to talk about healthy eating with kids. I worked for Jamie Oliver on Food Revolution and have always made working in the children’s food space a priority of mine. We need to start the education young.
Favorite seasonal farmers’ market finds? Any tips you can share for navigating the experience?
I’m currently into stone fruit, specifically from Andy’s Orchard in San Jose. Green Gage and Elephant Heart plums are my favorite. He grows varieties that they don’t grow in most of the country and world. I like to eat seasonally and these are just incredible.
My best tip: speak to the farmers and ask lots of questions if you’re curious. They know more than most.
Any healthful (and easy!) recipes you’d like to share?
Taking a great piece of fruit, drizzling it with grassy olive oil. I love using Brightland, a local California olive oil, and sprinkling some fleur de sel on top. You can’t mess this one up and everyone will be impressed.
Tell us something you’re especially excited about:
I wrote a children’s book about healthy eating, illustrated by Heather Rosen. Stay tuned. :)
What is your ritual for relaxation? At the end of a long day, what do you do to restore and reset?
I don’t have a specific ritual for relaxation, every day is so different and I wake up super early and usually have plans every night. I love to wash my face, eat some chocolate chip cookie dough that I keep in my freezer, and brush my teeth before we cozy up for bed. I recently started taking Prima CBD capsules that help me get some shut eye.
At Prima, we believe that self-care is health care. What is one thing you do to prioritize your physical, emotional or social health?
I make my physical, emotional and social health all equal priorities. I’ve worked out 6 days a week for as long as I can remember, I go to therapy every week and I prioritize being with the individuals I love. Life is short and a balancing act. I really make a concerted effort to be my best self with a lot of integrity, humor and empathy.