An Open Letter to Martha Stewart & Her Food Photos
Dear Martha Stewart,
I am writing you from a place of concern. I’ve seen your food pictures like this one:
Are you okay? Is this a cry for help?
You don’t know me. But as a fellow white woman from your hometown of Westport, Connecticut, I feel like you are “my people.”
Actually, I met you this one time at the Sherwood Diner off exit 18 from the I-95. You probably don’t remember. (I wouldn’t) You were eating a grapefruit half. I was in stage make-up after playing Snow White in Staples High School’s production of Stephen Sondheim’s Into The Woods. It was a very challenging role for a freshman. I only had one line in the very last scene of the three-hour long musical. Actually, it was less of a line and more a sigh. The line/sigh was, “Ah, excuse me.” And I nailed it. Many said my resemblance to Snow White was “uncanny”. And by “many” I mean my mom, my dad and the guy that was trying to get into my hip-hugger Abercrombie & Fitch jeans at the time.
That night I asked you to come to the show and you said you’d try. You never made it. But that’s okay. I understand. No hard feelings. You’re Martha Stewart. You probably had something more important to do like showing America how to make a glittered corn centerpiece for Thanksgiving.
So when people are calling your pictures “disgusting,” “nauseating” and “super white”, I want to defend you.
I bet your intentions were in the right place. You’re Martha Stewart, after all! The Original How-To Lady, The Pioneer of Do-It-Yourself Projects, The Queen of Halloween, without you how else would Americans know that you can make a delicious graveyard cake out of pudding, Oreos and Milanos? If it wasn’t for you, Pinterest probably would not be a thing.
And how could we forget the whole prison thing? You knew orange was the new black before any of us had Netflix accounts. Perhaps you were feeling nostalgic, since your photos resemble what I imagine prison food looks like.
Question: as someone who loves crappy food, is prison food better or worse that airplane food?
Follow up question: How does prison food compare to (my personal favorite) pizza from a chain restaurant that rhymes with Shmakeys?
Normally I don’t excuse people for taking pictures of their food and then posting those “photos” on social media. Especially when they are photographing something like a less than impressive latte with NO latte art (what’s the point), or their disgusting looking dinner they made their boyfriend (we get it you have a boyfriend).
But you are different, Martha. You’re Martha Stewart Living. You are living! Your whole career is about showing people how to live their lives better with your recipes and projects. So if anyone gets to take pictures of their food and then post that picture on Twitter it should be you. You earned it!
It’s not like you’re taking a picture of an In-N-Out burger, which we’ve all seen before. You’re attempting to take pictures of food that most of us have probably never seen before. Like seaweed bone marrow. What is that? I want to see what that looks like! But I can’t in this photo because the lighting is all wrong!
As someone who took an intro to film class for a semester in college, which I half paid attention to when I wasn’t stalking my ex from high school on Facebook, trust me when I say, you biggest problem with these photos is the lighting. But I get it, most nice restaurants are dimly lit and you don’t want to be rude with a flash and draw attention to yourself. But there are some food bloggers that seem to nail it. Maybe they have a better camera?
If you don’t have a better camera, have you heard of Instagram? Nothing makes your average looking photos look better than a nice filter. Any filter really except for Kelvin. Nothing looks good in Kelvin.
Martha I believe in you. America wants to see your food photos. I know you may be feeling down right now from everyone making fun of you for it. But look at it as constructive criticism. Every problem has a solution. And the solution to making your photos look better is simple: Instagram + better lighting.
I’m more than happy to show you how to take better photos of your food. We can meet at the Sherwood Diner next Tuesday and practice on grapefruits.
Featured images via Martha Stewart’s Twitter.