Mar 21, 2016

How My Photography Style is Like a Pie

If you ever asked my Grandpa what his favorite kind of pie was, he’d tell you “Round!” Pies are one of the few baked goods I feel like I’m good at. Pie crusts specifically. I can make a mean flaky crust! Learning to make the edges pretty is still a work in progress however.

Recently I joined a group for photographers to connect, do weekly exercises, and to help build each other up and grow. This past week’s exercise was to “describe the type of photographic style you aspire to by comparing it to food.” Food…I could get on board with this!

This exercise came at the perfect time! I’m working on a Branding and Marketing Essentials course and working to hone in on defining and representing my style through my brand and how I present it. Defining my style with food made me think about everything I’m learning, everything I’m dreaming about, and come up with specific characteristics.

Inviting. Classy. Comfortable. Authentic. Homey. Subtle. Light (but not too airy). That is what I want my photography to be. That is what I want the Marquette LaRee experience to be.

So when it came to food, I knew that it had to be something homemade, subtle, and comfortable. I first thought of biscuits and gravy. Comforting, subtle, homey. But not light, and needing a little more class. Suddenly, I knew the perfect food.


Specifically Buttermilk Pie!

A good Buttermilk Pie starts with authentic ingredients. Real butter. Fresh lemons. Buttermilk. Mmmm!

Then you need a well prepared crust to hold it all together.

And when combined and cooked just right you end up with a classy dessert that’s comforting, subtly sweet, inviting, homey, and light!

It is fabulous plain, or with some simple garnishes.  Real whipped cream and raspberries…MMMmmm!!

When it comes to my photography, I like to keep it simple and classy. I want people to feel comfortable at their session, so that we can get authentic emotions and interactions. I want the photos to have a light and inviting look to them. I want the whole experience to be professional, but comfortable and happy. As with pie, I want people to come away from a session with a sweet taste in their mouth. And the garnish on top? I love the opportunity to not just render a service, but to form relationships; to make friends, not just clients. Because really, friends are the whipped cream of life!

Buttermilk Pie Recipe:


1 1/2 c sugar
3 TBS flour
3 eggs
1 c buttermilk
1/2 c melted butter
1 1/2 tsp loosely packed lemon zest
2 TBS fresh lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk the sugar and flour together in a large bowl. 
  2. Whisk in remaining ingredients. 
  3. Pour into prepared crust. 
  4. Line edges of crust with strips of tin foil to shield them from burning. Remove tin foil (I find it is easier to mold the tin foil at this point when the pan is cool rather than later when it is hot). 
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. 
  6. Replace foil lining on edges. 
  7. Bake for another 20-30 minutes, until the top begins to turn golden. 
  8. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 1 hour to let the pie finish setting up. 
No Fail Pie Crust Recipe
1 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c. + 1 TBS shortening (I like using the butter flavored shortening)
2-4 TBS water
  1. Mix flour and salt together.
  2. Cut in the shortening (don’t over mix here, there will be shortening clumps and chunks, that’s normal and needed)
  3. Sprinkle in water 1 TBS at a time, mixing between each TBS. I use my hands to mix the dough, and I mix it by folding the dough in half rather than stirring or smashing). You want the dough to hold together and not be sticky.
  4. Sprinkle counter with flour and roll out dough to desired thickness.
  5. Place in pan, and poke 2-3 holes in bottom of crust (to prevent bubbles)
  6. Bake at 475 degrees for 8 minutes.

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  1. Ann

    March 21st, 2016 at 4:20 pm

    Love the comparison. My mom wasn't a baker. I think that by the time she feed our large family, thinking about dessert was just "too much work." I remember her baking cookies only once in my life — after a week of my begging for them. She burned them. Her response to burning them was "I told you I couldn't make cookies."
    I started making cookies, brownies, cakes and muffins while still in elementary school. But my freshman year of high school, I decided I was moving on to the big time…so under the guidance of a fabulous home economics teacher, I learned to make pies. I too make amazing crust using an old German technique adding a beaten egg and vinegar to the standard flour, salt and fat ingredients.
    I love your photos!

  2. Marquette

    March 22nd, 2016 at 1:47 am

    I am definitely going to look up the German technique! That's intriguing!! I'm so glad to find a fellow pie lover!