Cozy Winter Recipes

Once again I was collaborating with my friends over at Pie Drunk, Allison & Liz.  This time I left all the recipe research and cooking up to them, the pros.   They decided on two of the recipes from Love & Lemons.  You can find the recipes here.  One was a roasted butternut squash soup & the other was a creamy polenta & mushrooms.  More details about the recipes and how to cook will be posted on their blog.   I brought over the props, which I had recently purchased for a Seattle Magazine shoot!  I will be able to share more details about that when the magazine publishes in the middle of March. 🙂  Anyway, both recipes were delicious, I was really glad I was able to try both while shooting on a cold winter day.  This was right after I had attended the first annual Seattle Met Brunch Festival, which was soooo good.  So it was pretty much a full day of eating for me. Ha.

In other news, I am very excited to be going on an upcoming vacation to LA, Palm Springs, and Joshua Tree.   I hope to take a ton of pictures. Even though it is a short vacation, my sister & I have managed to cram in a ton of activities, and locations to go visit.  I am very much looking forward to a little warmth and sunshine, and new scenery, if even for a few days.

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Ginger Beer: 3 Ways

A few weeks ago, I had my friends Lindsay Burrows (stylist) and Allison Swanson (trained as a baker) over to make some varieties of Ginger Beer/Ale.  It was a really fun shoot. Lindsay focused on the styling, which looked amazing, and Allison cooked and researched the recipes, which tasted amazing.

We created mint, blood orange, and rosemary versions, and surprisingly the fan favorite was the rosemary.  These were technically infused ginger ales, but you can ferment them by finding a recipe where you add yeast, I have posted one below, and then they will be a legitimate ginger beer.  You can experiment by adding different varieties of herbs.  I thought a thyme one would be delicious as well.  Here are some links below to the recipes.

In other news, I am just finally now wrapping up the job I went to LA for, and I can’t wait to post those photos.  I also have planned a trip to LA & Palm Springs with my sister, which I am super excited for. I love Seattle, but this time of year, the gray skies do tend to drag on for a bit, so seeing some sunshine is going to be amazing!

Mint Ginger Ale

Blood Orange Ginger Ale

Rosemary Ginger Ale

How to Make Ginger Beer

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Snoqualmie Falls: I can hear Julee Cruise

I went up to Snoqualmie Falls last weekend with my roommate and we hiked to the bottom on the recently renovated trail.  It was beautiful.  The falls have a crazy amount of water right now flowing out of them, due to our increased amount of rainfall this year.  I had been hearing about it on the news and had to go visit.

Snoqualmie also holds a special place in my heart because I love Twin Peaks so much, and it was filmed right there.  I was obsessed with it in high school, so it is always a bit nostalgic to go and visit Snoqualmie and North Bend.  The Salish Lodge was the Great Northern, the hotel in Twin Peaks, just feet from the falls, and Twedes in North Bend was the RR Diner. We made a pit stop and I ordered some cherry pie to go.  It was just announced this past summer, that Twin Peaks will continue in 2016!  So exciting!!  I could just hear Julee Cruise, on my way up there.  (She sings the song on the opening credits)


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Pumpkin Picking in the Fall

This seems like so long ago now, with Christmas and New Years already come and gone.  I went pumpkin picking with a few close friends back in October, to Bob’s Corn. I love doing this and Bob’s is my favorite of the pumpkin patches in Western Washington.  There is a lot you can do, and the corn maze is crazy big, usually I will get lost, and have to find some edge to crawl out.  There is also SO MUCH FOOD and hay rides.  We had our first delicious serving of pumpkin pie of the season there.  Now that Fall is over, and Winter is here, I am looking forward to doing some snowboarding and snowshoeing. I haven’t been snowboarding in a few years, but bought my first new board in years from a friend and looking forward to testing it out!  Also, I am looking forward to planning some new shoots, details in the works.  It is always exciting to have something new on the books.




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Cidercraft Issue 2- Winter/Spring

I was really happy to have been able to photograph not one, but 3 stories for the Winter/Spring issue of  Cidercraft magazine.  Cidercraft, if you don’t know, is the only national magazine devoted entirely to cider.  The women who create the magazine are so awesome too, it’s pretty cool to be a part of their creation and on a shoot with them.  I photographed lots of different forms of cider for the 2nd issue, cider bottles, drinks made with cider, and food paired with and made with cider.  I really loved them all, but my favorite has to be the food story.   Enjoy the photos!




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2014, You’ve been great!

I can’t believe 2014 is over.  I had a fun and exciting year!  I started working somewhere new and met some really great people.  I was also able to photograph for a bunch of new clients and go on some much needed trips.  I feel very lucky and grateful for all the new friends I made and new experiences I had.  Doing new things for me isn’t always the easiest, so it has also been a bit scary, (ok really scary) but I have tried as much as possible to push those fears aside and the results have been very rewarding.  Much better than if I had chosen to back out, simply because I was afraid to do something new. There were some difficult times as well but what I am starting to learn, trying to accept, and almost appreciating is that there couldn’t be good without bad.

I was also able to do some traveling this past year.  I went to Chicago, Missoula, Las Vegas, LA, Denver, and Pheonix and hope to do more traveling plus at least one international trip for the coming year.  I am currently planning a trip to the southern coast of Spain for July.

Oh, I also moved, which was soooooo needed.  Moving out of a place where I could never sleep to a place that feels a lot like home, has been one of the best changes I made last year.

As far as  resolutions for the new year,  I usually don’t make a lot, but I just want to continue on the journey I am on.  I hope to do even more traveling for work and with friends. And cook more, and do more yoga. And see more music. Ok, maybe I do have some.  🙂 I am definitely looking forward to what 2015 holds in store.  Hope you have had a great year and wishing you a happy 2015!





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About a month ago, I did a test shoot with Rachel Grunig. We had been joking for a while about just photographing cheese because we both love it so much.  We had originally met on a shoot about a year ago and ended up bonding over the cheese, and our obsession with it. Well, we at least got a few shots out of the cheese before we ate it all. 🙂 I think at one point Rachel actually admitted just doing the cheese photo so we could eat it all later.

Rachel is just such an amazing stylist so everything ended up looking fantastic!   I had a job in LA a few weeks ago and knew immediately that I wanted to bring Rachel on board as the prop stylist, if I was able.  Always great to have familiar faces and trust in people, when you are in a new unpredictable setting.  More news on the LA job soon.  I really felt so unbelievably lucky that I am able to follow my dream and pursue what I love doing for a living.

Happy Holidays and enjoy the photos!

xoxo Amy_Johnson-0849 Amy_Johnson-0905Amy_Johnson-0879Amy_Johnson-0786Amy_Johnson-0820 Amy_Johnson-0929

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16 Course Modernist Cuisine Lunch for Massimo Bottura

A few months ago, I was asked to photograph for Yahoo Food.  It was a 16 course lunch for famous Italian chef Massimo Bottura at the Modernist Cuisine Lab. I was thrilled!  Massimo Bottura was touring the US for his recently published book, Never Trust a Skinny Chef.  I was a bit starstruck by the chef attendees along with Massimo.  Here is a link to the article and a few images below: A 16-Course Modernist Cuisine Lunch On a side note, I got to taste all the dishes, and they were amazing!

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16 Course Modernist Cuisine Lunch for Massimo Bottura

A few months ago, I was asked to photograph for Yahoo Food a 16 course lunch for famous Italian chef Massimo Bottura at the Modernist Cuisine Lab. I was thrilled!  Massimo Bottura was touring the US for his recently published book, Never Trust a Skinny Chef.    Here is a link to the article and a few images below: A 16-Course Modernist Cuisine Lunch On a side note, I got to taste all the dishes, and they were amazing!

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An Incredible Feast- Farmer’s Market Benefit

Back in early October, I had the opportunity to photograph the Neighborhood Farmer’s Market Alliance’s annual fund raiser for the second year in a row.  I asked my  friend and fellow photographer Rolan Wong if he wanted to join and he said yes.  I am the more shy, food photographer, and he is the more outgoing photographer,  so we make a good team.  It’s also helpful to learn from him about doing event photography.  In my line of work I also have to take photos of chefs, so this was  great practice for me.

The yearly event is a collaboration between amazing chefs and farmers and it helps to create emergency relief funding for farmers.   The 24 chefs and farmers work together to create dishes, and if you have purchased a ticket (or are working ;)) you can sample the many dishes that they have come up with.  The chef creates a dish using the farmer’s ingredients, then the guests get to sample and vote for the best one.  It’s a ton of fun, and there is so much talent that usually I am a little star stuck.  There are chefs from many of the top restaurants in Seattle, and they are always so nice and friendly.

I worked with the NFMA while I was in school.  I chose them to work with on our required Non-Profit advertising campaign.  They were a pleasure to work with and I still love to be able to give back to them.  They operate 7 of the Farmer’s Markets around Seattle and their main focus is education of the public and running food only farmer’s markets to help support local farmers.  If you haven’t been to one yet, you should go check them out.  The Capitol Hill Broadway Farmer’s Market recently became year round, so you can go visit them when all the others are closed! 🙂

Enjoy the photos!


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