THE OFFICE OF . . .
Where do you live?
Where did you grow up?
San Diego, CA
Nope- I’m a lone ranger!
Tell us a bit about what you do, and how you got there?
I was raised by my grandparents, the two people that introduced me to food, flavors. With their Southern roots, I grew up eating a large amount of Cajun food which was quite abstract to talk about in elementary school: okra, gumbo, grits- all unheard of to my friends and grew my curiosity at a young age. I wondered what other foods were available that I had yet to discover. My grandma would always let me experiment with her cameras, but when I was given my own at age 11 the hobby became a large part of my life immediately.
At 20 years old I created the goal of teaching myself how to cook anything and everything, then began Wright Kitchen. It started as a small blog where I posted recipes that I had success with in my journey but quickly changed. Instead of showcasing the final product, I chose to take my time working on an individual piece versus a set of images showing a recipe breakdown. I enjoy celebrating the beauty that can occur naturally within our food so much of my work is focused around fresh produce.
I wanted to find a way to be even more connected to the food I was eating, and begin to meet and learn from those who grow and create it. Throughout this time, I was able to spend time with different chefs, food producers, and build relationships with local farms. The never-ending passion that food was able to create within these people was inspiring and was similar to my feelings as well. Food and cooking have always been a calm escape from the chaos, a place where people and myself feel comfortable. This is a value that I instill into my home and into all of my personal relationships, it’s what drives my passion.
My goal for the future is to help influence our food. It started as a small piece that I wanted to impact and as I grow and learn I consistently recognize the potential for our communities to learn how beautiful the ingredients we see every day can be. In the beginning I set out to celebrate the beauty of individual ingredient as a way to contain and capture my excitement. While still a large piece of the focus, my inspiration and knowledge has grown throughout the process and has worked into my art as well. The connection with our food, or lack thereof in some cases, has been something I want to help reconnect. I’ve taken to creating art as my own way of shedding a different light on the topic. I hope to continue to inspire interest in the food we are capable of growing, and potentially even the interest of bringing it home to prepare a meal.
What does style mean to you?
To be yourself, and to express what makes you your own individual. It’s easy to quickly think of clothing and appearance as style but it’s everything we do in life. Our handwriting, the way we make our bed, gift wrapping choices, etc. I am a big fan of embracing my inner creativity and letting it flow how it wants to. One of the places where that shines the most is in my home, it’s important for me to create an environment where I feel inspired and excited. I tried to figure out and ‘label’ my style for so long but eventually just let that go because I pull pieces from so many places into my own personal style.
Who is your style icon?
A combination of Martha Stewart and Andy Warhol, so many pieces of their personal creativity, style, and impact on culture are inspiring and incredibly motivating for me.
What is your most valued possession?
It’s easy to think about many items I own and hold dear to my heart but my most valuable possession isn’t necessarily tangible. I have stones I’ve collected since I was very young around my home, a box of my grandpa’s belongings from when he passed, and photographs from my childhood that mean more to me than I’m able to explain.
Thinking deeply about the question, life itself is what I’m the most thankful for and feel is the most valuable. The relationships I have been able to grow with others and experiences I’ve been a part of are the most special. I have the words ‘love your life’ tattooed on my chest as a reminder to both myself and everyone else, we seem to let that slip at moments and forget how important it is.
Name one woman dead or alive that you would want to meet.
What is your favorite sweet?
ALL OF THEM! My friends tease me occasionally for always ordering something sweet or for focusing many of my recipes around sweet foods. My hometown of San Diego is also home to my favorite restaurant and bakery, Extraordinary Desserts. Everything is beautifully prepared and served with fresh and edible flowers. I pick anything from their bakery cases for my answer.
What is one song on your personal soundtrack?
Music is just as important to me as food and always has been, it turns on when I wake up and off when I go to bed. Dialing down to a single song is quite tough. The album ‘Fever To Tell’ by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs holds a very special place in my heart and I feel is a good representation of my vibe/style/world/etc. Karen O has been an idol of mine since hearing their first EP at age 11.
Who do you want to be when you grow up?
When I was 5 I was convinced that I could become a dolphin when I grew up, obviously that’s out. I think about this question often and it has evolved more into general (and slightly vague) ideas and feelings I hope to achieve. Like most of us, happiness, warmth, and excitement are all feelings I work towards keeping around. Building a home and workspace around the idea of those emotions is important to me. I want to inspire and motivate others with food and color, and continue my own goal of rebranding produce. I want to help motivate others and show that you can be successful as an artist, and on top of that you can inspire others while doing so.