Matt Dutile has been working with the publication, Endless Vacation, for years now, and after each successful shoot they always go back to him for more. For one of their latest shoots, they asked Matt to travel to the Shenandoah Valley to photograph food and restaurants in the area.
I wanted to show some of the great culinary treats in the Valley—to show the process from ingredients to cooking, plating and presentation. Ultimately it’s about story-telling.
Matt typically shoots travel and lifestyle—just touching on restaurants and food—but he says that not until recently has he made food one of his larger focuses. This assignment was a great chance for him to push his food focus and really explore the different components of a food narrative. It was especially nice for him working with a client who always trusted him to get the appropriate images and use his personal style to bring the story together. By going from the ingredients to the chefs to the plating, Matt was able to show how quality ingredients, in good hands, can turn into something innovative and delicious.
I’m definitely refining how I view, style, and photograph food. It’s going to be a continuing evolution.
The writer for the story traveled to the locations the week before Matt. He gave Matt the list of locations that would need to be photographed, and from there, Matt made appointments and set out to the Valley.
Matt’s biggest challenge for this shoot was shooting spring editorial at the end of fall. He says that this is always a challenge with season shoots, as you’re usually shooting months ahead of the season you want to evoke.
You’re far ahead of the season it’s going to run—and in temperate regions that means you might not have the environmental visuals you want.
For this shoot, they got lucky, as the first massive Nor’easter of the season hit just days after Matt’s trip. He was able to get his photographs in before the entire valley was covered in two feet of snow.
Endless Vacation was absolutely thrilled with Matt’s images, and they’ve actually already teamed up on another piece.
They’re a great client to have. They continue to put trust in me to get them the images they need and to continue pushing the boundaries. It’s a great collaboration.
To view more of Matt’s work, visit mattdutile.com