Fash­ion­able Food

Tara White­man, best known as @taramilk­tea, has a se­ri­ously ap­petis­ing In­sta­gram feed. Many rely on it to map out must-visit places to dine, stay and take en­vi­able pho­tos at around the world. The Aus­tralian-Sin­ga­porean blog­ger lets us in on her favourites

Harper's Bazaar (Singapore) - - CONTENTS -

How did @taramilk­tea be­gin?

My in­ter­est in pho­tog­ra­phy be­gan in my early teens; I got my first “real” cam­era when I was 12 and took pho­tos of ev­ery­thing. Nat­u­rally, when I was in­tro­duced to In­sta­gram five years ago, it was a fun, cre­ative out­let for me. But when I was ap­proached for my first paid job, I was blown away that I could make a liv­ing do­ing what I love through an app. Af­ter a few months of steady free­lance work, I quit my part-time jobs whilst fin­ish­ing my uni­ver­sity de­gree and haven’t looked back since.

Why @taramilk­tea?

I used to drink taro milk tea a lot in high school, to the point that a friend started call­ing me Taro. Then, it be­came Tara Milk Tea, and it stuck. I started us­ing it as all my on­line user­names and I’ve never once re­gret­ted it—a good milk tea can fix any­thing.

Has the way you cre­ate con­tent evolved?

The “way” is the same: If I see some­thing I like, I take a photo. But paid work for clients re­quires a lot more plan­ning from idea to shoot, so that’s what’s changed. Per­haps there is a lack of spon­tane­ity now? But when I’m trav­el­ling, ev­ery day is a sur­prise and I’m ever ready to cap­ture the mo­ment.

What are your five com­mand­ments to styling a shot?

Set a theme or pur­pose; use nat­u­ral light; find a nice back­ground; al­ways frame your flat lay by start­ing with one item at each cor­ner first; then use accessories and smaller items to com­plete your flat lay and make it de­tailed.

Some­times the most scrump­tious dish is the least pho­to­genic. What do you do then?

Eat! It’ll then be in my stom­ach be­fore the cam­eras come out.

What would you say is your blog and In­sta­gram’s recipe for suc­cess?

It’s hard to say, but per­haps keep­ing on top of trends (food-wise) and al­ways chang­ing my style to keep things fresh for my au­di­ence.

What are your top food des­ti­na­tions?

Ja­pan, for sure. How­ever, I may be bi­ased as Ja­panese cui­sine is my favourite. Also—I may be bi­ased on this too—but Syd­ney re­ally does have the best brunches, so I love com­ing home as I know a good brunch al­ways awaits.

What are your five must-eat dishes around the world?

Kobe beef in Tokyo; The Loop chur­ros in Orange County, Cal­i­for­nia (get them hot!); takoy­aki or okonomiyaki from the streets of Osaka; poke bowls in Hawaii; and the matcha crois­sant from Top Im­pres­sion Bak­ery Cafe in Syd­ney— make sure to eat it fresh out of the oven.

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